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Stanton Williams faces down criticism over Sloane Square

Stanton Williams, the architect behind controversial proposals to rework west London's famous Sloane Square, has vowed to battle on despite growing opposition to the plans.

Over the last few weeks a group known as Save Sloane Square (SSS) has added a number of high-profile names to its list of supporters - including the likes of musician Bryan Ferry, Lord St John of Fawsley, and the wife of construction magnate Robert McAlpine - campaigning against the plans.

The group claims to have obtained almost 4,000 signatures from objectors to the £5.5 million scheme, which is due to go for yet another round of public consultation later next month.

However, the practice believes the potential benefits and the increased public space which would come following the overhaul have not been fully appreciated and have been ignored in their recent outbursts in the press.

Architect Gavin Henderson said: 'The amount of interest has not really surprised us. There should be a lively public debate about the character of the space - public space is very important.

'But I think it's sad that the debate is not being furthered. SSS has very little to say about the public space aspect of the scheme. It constantly refers to it as a traffic improvement plan but ignores the fact that the proposal will create one-and-a-half times more public space.'

He added:' We will not alter the plans in response to individual pressure groups.'

The competition-winning scheme was first unveiled almost two years ago (Stanton Williams reveals new Sloane Square) and Kensington and Chelsea Council has also promised to press on with the current proposals.

by Richard Waite

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