Holborn Studios launch campaign against demolition

Pic: Stephen Mckay

Threatened by developers, the iconic Holborn Studios in Eagle Wharf Road, Hoxton, has launched a campaign to oppose demolition.

The proposal introduced by Gold Property Developments Ltd, plans to demolish existing buildings and replace them with a new residential complex featuring restaurants and commercial spaces. The property development company has owned the site for 30 years and believes the proposal for ‘regeneration’ will attract new creative business.

The family-run studio is urging members of the public to submit comments to their website. These submissions will be kept and passed onto Hackney council.

Billy McCartney, managing director of Holborn Studios said: “I am not sure of what Hackney’s response will be, I hope in favour of keeping this beautiful historic site”.

Holborn studios is the largest photography hire complex in Europe and is considered by many as an institution. The studio falls within the Regent’s Canal Conservation Area and priority Employment area, which is hub of creative industry.

If the Hackney council agrees to the proposed planning application, Billy McCartney has argued that many jobs will be at risk: “At this time we have 90 per cent capacity office rental. We are currently at full capacity. We have 120/130 people working in full time jobs here without a single studio being used. Once you add in shoots that number will jump to 300-400 per day. There are plenty of new build offices in this area that have been lying empty for two to three years.”

Local campaigner Ian Shacklock from The Friends of Regent’s Canal expressed his concerns: “We did not like the proposal that we saw in November. My opinions have not changed, I hope that the council will reject the application and choose to protect the heritage if the area.”

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