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Iranian embassy proposals anger residents

Plans for a new Iranian Embassy in Kensington have provoked controversy among local residents who are calling on the Prince of Wales to intervene

Designed by Austrian practice Daneshgar Architects, the proposals are for a five-storey building and basement that would act as an embassy for the Islamic Republic of Iran and a cultural exhibition centre.

A spokesman for Prince Charles, who was successful in stopping Richard Rogers’ modernist plans for the nearby Chelsea Barracks development, said a response would be issued once a letter from residents was seen.

The building, clad in marble and stone, is not far from Iran’s current embassy and would sit on the site of an existing car park.

John Edward Howes, a resident opposite the site, told the Mail on Sunday he had written to the prince and added that the plans were “out of character” with the area.

Though the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea received a planning application at the end of May, it was unable to make the plans public on its website following a request from the Metropolitan Police over security concerns.

However, it did write to 115 neighbouring residents on 18 June to make them aware of the plans and posted notices on the site and in the local paper.

A council spokesperson said: “The council has since agreed with the Metropolitan Police that computer generated images of the proposed building can go onto the website and these are now available. Residents have always been able to come into the Town Hall to view documents for the application.”

A planning decision is expected towards the end of the summer.

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