Richmond Society hands out yearly good, the bad, and the ugly awards

Society patron: Bamber Gascoigne

Disrepair: 132 Richmond Hill has been restored to its former glory

Revitalised: 132 Richmond Hill

First published in News

Owners, architects and builders behind the restoration of a neglected 17th century house were recognised at the annual Richmond Society awards.

Dogged by fire and squatters, 132 Richmond Hill had fallen into disrepair and the society praised those behind who restored it with “great care and consideration taken to preserve the character and detail of the facade”.

Society patron Bamber Gascoigne presented those behind the project with a brass plaque at the good, the bad, and the ugly awards last Thursday. The awards, in its 34th year, recognise public and private developments in Richmond of note over the past year and reviews the society’s work.

In his review of the year, Charles Pineles, chairman of the planning committee, told the audience at St John The Divine Church, Kew Road, Richmond, he mourned the loss of a strong example of an art deco house in Kings Road. Its demolition had been strongly opposed by the society. He also noted the ugly “stub” of a 1970s-style office building proposed for the heart of the Vineyard was out of place both as to style and planning use.

In his address, he said Richmond’s greatest asset was the diversity of its architecture, a theme which was picked up by subsequent speakers. For Mr Gascoigne, the range of architectural jewels included the alleyways and roads which preserved the original footprint of the town.

The panel awarded commendations to the following (bullet points please): *Paths across Richmond green - the area was transformed from a muddy, waterlogged quagmire into an “effective, and visually pleasing thoroughfare for all”.

*Paving in George Street - largely financed by Transport for London, the paving has completely changed the character of the high street.

*188 Sheen Road - the owners were praised for making “something exceptional” out of a “dreary, traditional old building” at a major intersection.

*15 Little Green - commended for its interior and exterior refurbishment to a high standard.

*The Duke Pub restaurant - the wing addition is a “heart-warming compliment to the designer and the pub operator which enhances and conserves the conservation area”.

Richmond mayor, Councillor David Marlow, said the awards were “richly deserved”. He added: “Every area should have a Richmond Society, they are the guardians of what happens in the town, and without them it would be a much poorer place.”

Society chairman Alan Saunders congratulated everyone for their efforts and said the society was striving to maintain the quality of its work. The awards ceremony was followed by a cheese and wine party.

For more information about the Richmond Society visit richmondsociety.co.uk.

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