Richmond's historic Brewery Stores will be developed into seven luxury apartments and seven offices after being bought by a property developer.

The 19th-century red brick building in Petersham Road became the original British Legion Poppy Factory in 1926 when it ceased to be used as a bottling factory for the nearby Richmond Brewery.

June Sampson feature: 'Villified' Field Marshal Haig's forgotten role in poppy appeal

Planning permission for an additional floor was granted in 2009, and developer Banda intends to turn the 20,000sq ft building into a mixed-use development with construction expected to begin later this year.

Some neighbours raised objections to earlier applications on the grounds the development plans would not be in keeping with the site’s history, but Banda managing director Edo Mapelli Mozzi said the developer was intent on restoring the building’s original character and period details wherever possible.

He said: "Richmond is a fabulous location, combining many extensive parks, an established riverside presence, superb restaurants and shops with excellent transport links into central London and out to Surrey.

"We like to seek out characteristic buildings that will make beautiful and architecturally exciting homes that are returned into the heart of the community."

Council cabinet member for environment, business and community Councillor Pamela Fleming agreed that the historic significance of the site must be preserved.

She said: "It is a historic site and very important site and we need to make sure it is given the best possible development."