Woolwich town centre shopfront refurbishment plan now underway

The first proposals to renovate historic buildings and shopfronts in Woolwich have started to be submitted to Greenwich Council.

The work is part of a multi-million upgrade proposed for the town centre which will also see extensive public realm works along Powis Street and Beresford Square.

Proposed change

And it looks great in this application.

There are two major schemes in the town. One will revamp public spaces along Powis Street – as covered extensively here when plans were submitted – alongside Beresford Square.

The other is to revamp shopfronts as part of a High Streets Heritage Action Zone project.

One prominent corner site will see street level frontage altered from an anonymous nothingness to a characterful ground floor.

Building changes

This is the change to Xposed Fashions on a corner site at Powis Street and Barnard Close.

The application for this specific site states:

“The host building is a three storeys, white painted brickwork late Victorian construction that was done in the classical style.

The building was constructed in 1896 as the headquarters of the Woolwich Equitable Building Society and holds an important cultural significance for the area.

Building on left looking towards Sainsburys

Besides from the parapet that has been rebuilt and the repainting of the facade , most features from the upper floors are still preserved and in good condition.

The ground floor, to which this application relates, has lost all traces of the original design.

The original stone facade has been removed and replaced with a glazed modern shopfront with a plastic fascia, covered now by painted plywood.”

Unfortunately this building is rather overshadowed by a pretty awful 200s revamp of an office block.

Not the best renovation to rear

So far the first two shopfront plans are in, with ArtFix the other.

Artfix on left

Many others are expected to follow.

Similar projects were implemented in Abbey Wood (though on a far smaller scale with Greenwich contributing £75,000) and Plumstead High Street (that’s over £5 million in total).

Renovated shopfront

Unfortunately Abbey Wood has barely been maintained since with both sides of the station falling apart.

The eastern side of the station which TfL renovated as part of £6 million is in bad shape.

Abbey Wood paving dug up. Concrete blocks dumped further along and no cleaning for months

Let’s hope Woolwich gets a bit more attention.

I’ll continue to cover forthcoming plans.

In a few weeks or months a press release will likely be put out by Greenwich Council and then the lazy old press like the News Shopper will cover it – pretty much word for word of the press release. Then again, now I’ve covered it they may copy me (wouldn’t be the first, or even hundredth time).

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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.

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