The Sainsbury’s building in Charlton hasn’t aged well

There are some buildings around which offer a great lesson in what materials not to use when putting up a new development. And also offer an abject lesson in poor maintenance. One of them is the block of flats containing Sainsburys in Charlton.

The shop opened in 2014 and the flats a couple of years earlier. Even in 2014 the building was looking shoddy.

The rendered exterior is heavily stained in places. You’d never know this building is just seven years old.

As one of the first things many will see upon leaving Charlton it’s a pretty rubbish introduction to the town. Though the tired shopping parade isn’t much better in terms of public realm.




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J Smith

I've lived in south east London most of my life growing up in Greenwich borough and working in the area for many years. The site has contributors on occasion and we cover many different topics. Living and working in the area offers an insight into what is happening locally.

    5 thoughts on “The Sainsbury’s building in Charlton hasn’t aged well

    • I worked with an architectural design firm for some years and I noticed that the elegance in design was often limited by the architect’s familiarity with Microstation or whichever systems they used. I’d see a few come up with lovely pen and paper or model concepts, but have difficulty translating it into a practical computer model. It was usually just easier to copy and paste rectangles ad infinitum, which seems to be the design for most of the new builds in Greenwich. How the designers of Sainsbury’s convinced anyone that the design was a good fit for the area speaks volumes to prevailing attitudes.

    • I always just assumed it was a straightforward cost thing. Basic, unadorned concrete is a lot cheaper than anything actually attractive is my train of thought.

    • The parade has shops closed for years. Freeholders do no look after buildings. .At the village there are rumours of new development along the parade in front of assembly room. Hopefully they will do a good job keeping a style that fit well within the Village. The Royal borough should set some standards.

      Charlton was changing prior the brexit referendum , with more and more professionals moving into the area and buying homes and it could have been an opportunity for blooming. That flow had suddenly slowed down since the referendum outcome and the property market trend is speaking for itself. It is 3 years that London is hostage of brexit debate and uncertanty.

    • Didn’t even bother to paint the render. That really is cheap.

    • its not just the materials and design that are a leson in how not to design a building. the buidling this replaced sat further back from the road, you can see in the picture that the buidling steps forward from the adjacent betting shop and restaurant. This combines with the exisiting narrowing pavement and road to create a tight and completly blind corner at the junction with Floyd road. For a busy pedestrian area with the shops and the station it a pain and manouvering often means stepping into the road. Its also creates something of a blind road junction for motorists. It just adds to the slightly depressing feeling as its clear that the developer was only interested in maximising the footprint with no interest in the impact on the the local environment.


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