Connecting Crouch End and Hornsey with news, views and information
There's a big sign up announcing the arrival of Middey's Brasserie on this crucial corner site part of the Hornsey Town Hall site. Just now there is an absolutely hideous fence obliterating any view of any thing at all. It's truly ugly. I'm guessing that Middey's will be an outpost of this Cockfosters outifit, which proclaims itself as a new concept - a pleasantly comfortable place with half decent food and some drinks - how will Crouch Enders cope with such an innovation?
Apparently all refurbishment work at Middeys came to a halt on 4th Feb because they have been served notice by Haringey Planning Enforcement that they need to make an application for listed building consent. See planning application HGY/2016/0563 for more info.
Well this is a bit of a pickle, is it not. This building, and others nearby, seem to suffer from planning disruptions. The awning along the side of the building has a chequered planning history, and do you remember when Riley's applied for a change of use when none was needed?
I've not been impressed by the way Middey's have approached this. The silly claims on the hoarding are pretty bad, and I rang them up recently when they were driving a lorry on the pavement on a busy Saturday afternoon, but I completely missed the fact they'd need listed building consent.
I've read the papers submitted in support of the changes. I think the concluding sentence of the heritage statement "It is strongly believed that the proposed works will have negative affect to the property and its character." actually means the exact opposite of what is intended, and sits alongside some other slightly strange constructions. The papers have been prepared by IntelliArch Ltd - a quite profitable architectural practice run by Murat Aydemir which has a parked website. And of course, planning permission is not the same thing as listed building consent.
BTW - in the second photo above there is a sign for a tree surgeon hanging on the railings, but not in the earlier one.
I guess we're not overly impressed thus far. I was hoping that the careless building works were down to the contractors rather than the restaurateurs - but the disappearing 'TELEPHONES' signage from the fascia (rescued by ANA?) was more than negligent. Now the newly installed doorway, without planning permissions and entirely out of keeping with the listed frontage (and of cheap design), does not bode well. So too the odd and barely comprehensible planning application (was it translated from another language?).
With the forthcoming arrival of new owners for the square itself, with new ideas and some sort of re-modelling likely, this may be a moment for Crouch Enders to sit up and take notice. Changes are afoot, and one hopes the local authority, Historic England, and perhaps the new kids on the block, the Neighbourhood Forum, will prove equal to the job and secure a decent future for Crouch End's (and Hornsey's) civic centre.
The exterior of their Cockfosters outlet (below) also looks artless, generic, and disappointing. Perhaps the food's good. It may have to be, otherwise they won't last - -
This is worrying. The building forms an essential side of the "agora" of the Hornsey Town Hall complex and its design is in the same modernist Thirties style as the Grade II*-listed main building. If details have been demolished Haringey needs to require their restoration. No ifs, no buts.
See this further piece from the Crouch End Neighbourhood Forum on the Town Hall Square
Quite by chance I had the pleasure of eating in the Cockfosters establishment at lunchtime today. The exterior now has much more comfortable seating than in the picture above. I'd say it is more of a cafe/lunch place than restaurant: 50% wooden tables & chairs, 50%armchairs with low tables. The menu was quite extensive - I opted for a toasted BLT sandwich which came triple-decked (hot) with accompanying salad, for £5.95. It was pretty good. Of course the Cockfosters building is a non-descript unlisted affair, so it remains to be seen whether they will be sensitive to the historic features of a listed building or just seek to impose a corporate formula come what may.
Just posted over at CE App Soc facebook site. Make of it what you will...
Maybe this link instead
I don't know what the full breaches are but overall Middey's are not showing themselves to be an impressive outfit. The excuses by (I can only assume) the owner do not ring true. I don't for one moment believe that the Telephone lettering was stolen.
There is no denying that the image looks nice, but then they always do. Images like these only ever give a positive impression, they don't really show materials, finish and detail.
So for example, whilst I am not against the idea of having outside dining, I don't like the idea of decking or whatever that covering is. They seem to be permanently hiving off the pathway. Will the area be covered? I hated that ramshackle lean to effort Spazzio put up. If they have any covering at all they should do the same as Carluccios and have umbrella's.
Interestingly, there is no signage on this image. I wonder how garish that is going to be.
Anyway I hope this image helps CENF and others ensure that going forward Middeys have a bit more respect for the local area.
Thank you Adrian. You mention a Mr Redbeard. Then who is Rossi Barbarrosa on CE Appreciation Thread who supplied the image and claims the telephone signage was stolen?
Unsurprisingly Haringey commercial planners support the application. But then I don't have much faith in our council regarding anything to do with CE generally or their own buildings. They only seem interested in our "capital" Wood Green.