It’s now over two years since the Standard Music Venue was bought and closed by TFC Supermarkets and still we wait for news on it’s future. In the meantime TFC have allowed the building to crumble, doing little to the site beyond scrawling £5 to park on cardboard signs outside.
Holes appeared in the side of the building, and it was left open to the elements with bits of its sign falling onto the pavement. Developers on the site behind claimed TFC would only sell the land to them at a vast mark up (and this before the current property spike) and any attempt at contact from community groups has been ignored. They told the local paper that plans to open a music venue next door were being scupered by the council.
Recently however work (presumedly not structural as they have no planning permission) began on the site and many residents have been in touch asking what’s going on?
Update from Waltham Forest Council planning officers: 28th Feb 2014
“Pre-planning application discussions with the owners TFC are still on-going. We are trying to negotiate a mutually acceptable scheme that meets the Council’s objectives and TFCs needs. Until the Council are confident that any proposed scheme, in terms of its quality and uses, can be considered favourable we will not be inviting a planning application submission. The Council is hoping to get a high quality mixed use development on the site that will incorporate retail units on the ground floor, residential above and a some form of entertainment facility. The owners can of course decide to submit a planning application at any time they choose and we would have to consider it on its planning merits, but to date we have not seeing a scheme that meets the Council’s objectives for the site“.
In January 2012 the leader of the council, Chris Robbins issued this statement regarding the venues importance to the area:
“Many of you will know the Royal Standard Pub / Standard Music Venue near Blackhorse Road Station in Walthamstow. This venue although not the prettiest in the borough, has long been a place used by local musicians. A few months ago the pub and surrounding buildings was bought by a family run supermarket (TFC Supermarkets). Their initial plan was to knock the pub down. Being aware of its music history I contacted the new owners and asked them to meet with me with a view to alerting them to how important the Standard Music Venue is to us as a borough. I informed the new owners that we would expect the pub to be physically retained and that it should continue to be a venue providing local entertainment. I am pleased to tell you that there initial response was very positive and that we are now in discussions with this company with a view to restoring the building and its function.”
The Standard has been in every area action and 10 year plan for the last decade. In March 2005 Cathy Low, group manager of Waltham Forest Regeneration programmes responded to a question from BAG about residents concerns that we don’t just get housing in the new Blackhorse Lane but at the very least keep our existing amenities and entertainment places.
“Thank you for your concern about the future of the Standard Music Venue. It is possible that the new developments around Blackhorse Road station will include the land currently occupied by the Standard……. It is very much our intention to ensure that any new developments lead to an improvement in entertainment and leisure facilities in the area. Many local people have also expressed support for keeping the Standard so we intend to work with the landowners and developers to see whether it would be possible to include a new and improved Standard within any new developments. We will keep you informed in this regard“.
You can read a fascinating history of the Standard Music Venue / Royal Standard on the ever excellent Walthamstow Memories site.
— Mark Amies (@Superfast72) March 23, 2014
@BlackhorseAG Seeing that makes me sad and angry
— Christiane (@frankandfloyd) February 15, 2014