An article from the www.theguardian.com site copylefted
Artists, craftspeople and fashion designers in one of London’s largest remaining studio colonies are fighting plans to bulldoze their premises and replace them with almost 1,400 mostly luxury apartments.
In a new frontline in the battle against the capital’s gentrification, housing giant Berkeley Homes has applied for planning permission to demolish studios on a former gas works site in Fulham in southwest London, which is currently used by more than 200 businesses in the creative industries.
Tenants opposed to what they describe as a Dubai-style development of blocks rising to 27 storeys include one of the Duchess of Cambridge’s favourite fashion designers, Pepa Gonzalez, who has made clothes for Prince George and Princess Charlotte; and Julius Schoonhoven, a leading clockmaker who works for the National Trust and the Royal Palaces.
The affected businesses include fine artists, architects and designers and have a combined multi-million pound turnover.
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The dispute is set to test a manifesto promise made in May by London mayor Sadiq Khan to “protect London’s workspaces and venues threatened by encroaching development”. The plans are set to go before the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham’s planning committee in the coming months and Khan’s spokesman said it would “inappropriate to comment while this is still a live case”.
The threat to the studios is not an isolated case. Between 2014 and 2019, 3,500 artists were predicted to lose their places of work in London – a 30% cut, according to a report by the Greater London Authority.
The temptation to replace them with private housing is strong for developers. The artists pay as little as £500 a month in rent, but Berkeley Homes is currently selling three bedroom apartments for £6m at a neighbouring site, Chelsea Creek.
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The housebuilder’s founder and chairman, Tony Pidgley, earned £21.5m last year.
But on a visit by the Guardian this week, the tenants argued they form a vital part of London’s creative industries sector, which provides one in eight jobs in London.
Fashion designers described how they manufacture clothes in other parts of the capital while fine art and furniture restorers said they worked for Sotheby’s and major galleries. They are likely to face eviction next year.
Below is a link to the Artist Work Space study from the City of London UK
and below here is a link to the Artist Work Space study from the City of London UK named artists_workspace_study_september2014_reva_web_0
stored at this blog