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Rob Miller
Letter: on behalf of residents around Hove station
Saturday 13 July 2014
Dubarry building campaign website

The formal deadline for consultation responses threatens the Dubarry Perfumery Building, the first building to welcome visitors to Hove at the railway station. We have so little time. Eleven days to be exact, writes Rob Miller on behalf of local residents

Dear Civic Brighton & Hove, I am writing to you as a matter of urgency about a planning application that threatens a very important building in Hove. As you might already be aware, developers want to put an extra floor of flats on top of the Dubarry Perfumery Building next to Hove Station, about the first building to welcome visitors to Hove at the railway station. We have so little time. Eleven days to be exact.

The Dubarry Perfumery Building is a historic piece of architecture that is the first building to welcome visitors to Hove at the railway station.

It is a very important building to Hove and immediately sets the tone with it’s unique art nouveau facade and bright colours. It is a complete one-off and a building that the local residents are immensely proud of.

There are a couple of flats on the Dubarry Building already in the east corner which were built quite a while ago, and now it has become plainly apparent why the developers did this as it was an odd decision when they were built. The developers will argue that there is already a precedent set here and that they should be allowed to continue the line of these flats, which will completely destroy the building outline – the one thing that makes it so unique.

These existing flats look appalling with the appearance of an outside bar you would normally find in a tacky resort rather than actual living spaces. I was so surprised when someone told me they were actually flats.

The local residents are up in arms about the whole idea of this development proposalfor so many reasons – loss of light, loss of privacy, serious parking issues, light pollution, rubbish areas at the bottom of people’s gardens (rather than the ample car park at the front), security, fire risks, noise – the list goes on.

However, I am writing to you to ask for your help in opposing this development because of the building’s importance to the local area. I am stunned that the Dubarry Perfumery Building is not listed as it is such a fantastic sight when seen in its glory. When you find out its history as the perfumery the story becomes even more compelling. Even the owner/developers themselves, when advertising the building for businesses to rent, refer to the “iconic building”.

The developers have shown themselves to be architectural philistines in wanting to spoil a landmark building which epitomises the essence of Hove.

Dumping a row of metal clad boxes (that will look awful in 20 years time) on top of such a fascinating structure is an outrage at both a local and national level. They are so confident that this is going to go through that they have already erected scaffolding around the building – but always putting it up early on Saturday and Sunday mornings! They show nothing but contempt for the people who live here.

I understand the need for more housing in this country but this should never come at the expense of buildings like the Dubarry Perfumery Building. This building needs to be saved.

We have so little time. Eleven days to be exact. That is all we have. There is a residents meeting today (Station pub, Hove, 4pm) to discuss what we can do about this but the clock is ticking.

Any help or guidance you can give us in objecting to this development would be greatly appreciated and welcomed by us all. We need all the help we can get.

We have a web site set up so people can exchange views on this – http://www.dubarrybuilding.co.uk

Rob Miller