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What about a mini-Westfield with Angel Wings outside?

02 March, 2018

‘The wings at Angel Central shopping centre are to be removed’

• WHY is Islington Council so secretive about major planning applications?

For the Windsor Street development there were two pink official notices hidden away, with the end-of-consultation date being February 2. Yet when that date was changed to February 22, these were removed. Unlawfully, no public notices were put up anywhere in the area.

Another major development that I doubt many readers will know about is the hidden major planning application for Angel Central shopping centre. This will see Angel Wings removed, with no mention of the stunning symbol that has come to be a focal point of Angel being erected elsewhere.

They are also going to adjust the car park to just 27 spaces and make the rest retail and more restaurants. Angel Central, formerly the N1 Centre, has always had quite a few shops and restaurants open and close either quickly or after a short period.

One shop that had been there since the opening closed last year because the manager said that, while very busy, it could not afford the heavy rents and business rates. Head office said it was not viable to be there purely as a loss leader to have its name in the area.

Wetherspoons closed more than a year ago and is still up for let. A restaurant that opened in October closed less than a month later and is still empty. A jewellers which opened in November is having its closing-down sale.

So, do we really need more retail and food spaces created when the ones that are already there cannot survive very long and are left empty? When a phone shop closed it took more than two years before it was re-let, and that is now closing.

If the centre was to become a small version of Westfield, with department and DIY stores – almost non-existent in that part of Angel – and with Angel Wings at its entrance and affordable rents for businesses, that would be a different matter though. By the way, objections (or support) for the Angel Central application must be made by Monday.

Does Islington Council think it is fair that comments on planning applications can only be made online? Unfair for those who do not have, or want, internet access. Hardly fair consultation is it?

Popham Street Estate, N1


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