The Twentieth Century Society

Campaigning for outstanding buildings

Pimlico School

C20 has campaigned long and hard to secure the future of Pimlico School, which it considers an outstanding post-war building.

We have put it forward for listing no less than four times, and strongly opposed the application made by Westminster for a Certificate of Immunity from Listing (sadly granted in 2003 and still in force). In 2005 we asked Westminster to alter its conservation area designation to include the school in the protected area (at present it is specifically excluded).

We objected to the PFI scheme for a replacement building proposed in 1999.  We successfully lobbied and sought support from influential individuals to prevent this, if necessary by holding a public inquiry.  Since this scheme was dropped we have supported a well researched and designed refurbishment proposal for the building.

We are very disappointed and saddened by the latest proposals to demolish what is undoubtedly one of the most interesting and challenging buildings of its date.   We have written to object to the planning application, but this is a case where the support and acclaim of expert individuals and organisations has so far  been unable to sway the decision making process.  It seems likely that Westminster will shortly grant permission.  We feel that in time this regrettable conclusion will be seen by posterity to have been short-sighted and unimaginative, but unfortunately there are no further procedures by which we can now prevent demolition.

Catherine Croft