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EPR tweaks £1bn Ram Brewery scheme

EPR is revising its plans for the overhaul of Ram Brewery in Wandsworth to appease English Heritage

The AJ100 practice has drawn up a ‘number’ of amendments to the high-profile Minerva-backed scheme in south London in response to feedback from key stakeholders and planners.

English Heritage said it had ‘considerable concern’ over EPR’s proposals for 669 new homes and 9,300m² of retail but has yet to comment on the recent amendments which have yet to be submitted.

The studio submitted fresh plans for the 2.4 hectare former brewery in November more than two years after an initial 1,000-home attempt, also opposed by English Heritage, was vetoed by public inquiry.

In a letter dated 10 May, the heritage conservation body warned the new scaled-down scheme had the potential to cause ‘severe detriment’ to the nearby Grade II*-listed All Saints Church and a Georgian terrace named Church Row.

EPR’s design features a 36-storey residential tower and buildings rising to 12 floors which English Heritage said could be seen above Church Row when viewed from Wandsworth High Street.

The studio’s 2008 proposal featured two residential towers of 29 and 39 storeys alongside buildings rising to eight floors which could not be seen from Church Row.

English Heritage’s letter said: ‘We continue to believe that the proposals cause substantial harm to the setting of the Grade II* listed buildings of All Saints’ Church and Church Row, and the Wandsworth Town Conservation Area.

‘We urge [Wandsworth Council] to seek further amendments to these proposals in order to mitigate against the substantial harm it will cause to the historic environment.’

Minerva joint chief executive Tim Garnham said: ‘The Ram brewery is a pivotal development site in the centre of Wandsworth town and has always faced a number of challenges including how to respond to the Listed buildings on the site.  

‘We have been working closely with planning officers and stakeholders, who share our desire to see the site regenerated.  The development will provide much needed housing, and a vibrant mix of retail uses, whilst securing the future of the listed buildings and other heritage assets across the site.

‘We welcome English Heritage’s interest in the proposals and have met with them on numerous occasions.  We have recently completed work on a number of amendments to the planning application in response to their comments and those of other stakeholders.  

‘We will be seeking to discuss those amendments with LB Wandsworth and English Heritage at the earliest opportunity.’

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