Blackmail, guns, thugs: not Hackney but Kent

Plan for 4-14 Spurstowe Terrace E8 1LT by Pod Architects

What, Hackney a better money haven than this Kentish segment? Yes: its northeast corner is certainly Kent. But it is a world away from the gentility of National Trust manor houses, Canterbury cathedral and Dover castle.

Touching the traditional villain territory of southeast London at the top and the Isle of Sheppey at its base, it is a region that makes Essex, on the other side of the river, seem refined.

So the perhaps more-secure business environment of Dalston would appeal to property investors.

Above is pictured a block of flats and offices proposed for a backstreet site in Dalston. Planning permission has been given to demolish the buildings on the east side of Spurstowe Terrace and erect a basement and five-floor block of  24 flats and two offices.

Behind the project is a Dartford and Gravesend-based firm called Charles Bentley UK, led by Colin Singh Basi, Sukhveer Singh Dhillon and Lukhbir Singh, who probably want to be known as developers.

Basi’s background is construction, the field in which he found himself the

Scotney Castle MidKent 120311 © David Altheer
Deep in Kent: down in the Weald away from the nasty northeast of the county

target of a guns-and-thuggery plot to blackmail him for just under half a million pounds. The crooks were charged, convicted and banged up.

In the Spurstowe Terrace building will be a basement and five-floor block of  24 flats, and two offices.

Paul Shedden, director of Pod Architects, of Clerkenwell, is proud of the ecological aspects of his design. It includes secure basement storage for 40 bicycles which, he says, “exceeds the recommended standard”.

He told Loving Dalston: “We are pleased to be involved in the regeneration of the borough.”

Common parts of the building would be serviced by photovoltaic panels, he said, although he gave no details of cost-savings to tenants or buyers.

As for disabled users, the design “provided 10% lifetime homes within the development”. (No, me neither.)

The development was “8.3% affordable and 8.3% shared ownership, 83.4% market sale”.

When will it be built? Pod declined to say. The fear is that this supposed regeneration project is just another drawing-board scheme to boost the value of the site.

One day, work will start – probably – but given the building’s stated amount of affordability – less than 10% – and the nonsensical imprecision of that term, Hackneyites may find it difficult to see Spurstowe Terrace as “regeneration”.

David Altheer 121214

* Hackney council planning permission for application 2014/2565 for 4-14 Spurstowe Terrace E8 1LT

* Emboldened underscored words in most cases indicate a hyperlink, a reader service rare among websites. If a link does not work, it is probably because the site to which the URL refers has not been maintained.

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One thought on “Blackmail, guns, thugs: not Hackney but Kent

  1. This is a terrible article. The first four paragraphs make no sense and there is nothing newsworthy in the rest of it. Essentially, there’s a developer building some flats off Dalston Lane.

    Not quite: more a case of an investment company than a developer. The difference is key, because this could become another case of land being passed on, which is a little-mentioned factor in the disastrous rise in property prices.

    It’s gratifying that you expect better from this site. As for the intro, I am afraid I can never resist even the slightest chance to write about Kent and preferably use a picture. – Ed.

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