Ex-servicemen's housing planned for Burlington Lane

Design of new three-storey blocks provokes local indignation

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Residents of Burlington Lane received a shock when they attended a public meeting last Thursday hosted by the Oswald Stoll Foundation. 

The Sir Oswald Stoll Foundation is a charity and registered Social Landlord who provide housing and enabling services to disabled and homeless ex-Service personnel and other people with disabilities. They own and manage housing and provide the appropriate support to those they house to ensure that they can live independently in the community with a good quality of life.

Held in the Riverside Tennis Club, the meeting was called to enable the charity to put forward their proposals for the Chiswick War Memorial Homes site in Burlington Lane. 

These proposals included not only the planned refurbishment of two existing buildings built in the 1920's, they also covered the demolition of two further buildings and the construction of three three-storey blocks of flats thus doubling the site's occupancy.

Whilst locals state they are not against the housing of ex-servicemen, they do have major concerns regarding the design of building, the need to cut down mature trees and the two years of disruption the build will cause.

One resident described the designs for the blocks of flats as 'brutal and ugly'  She said "They are totally unsympathetic to the surrounding buildings and out of character with the area. This is a conservation area and no attempt has been made to embrace this."

The plan's Architect, Chris Alder, confirmed that there had been a massive outcry at the meeting. He stated that the plans were to be submitted soon to Hounslow Council however, he was interested in the responses. Drawings of the proposed new buildings are not currently available for publication. 

The Foundation was established by theatre impresario Sir Oswald Stoll in 1916 for soldiers suffering permanent injury from the First World War. The aim was to provide a place where they could live with their families and receive the medical and social support needed. Without the Foundation their outlook was of permanent hospitalisation. Sir Oswald Stoll donated the land on which Stoll Mansions was built, and raised funds for the building from his theatres and from the sale of War Seals.

The Foundation plans to build over 100 new homes by 2006. The five separate developments will have approximately 20 self-contained one-bedroom flats, will be fully wheelchair-accessible, and have community and education/counseling rooms. Each building will be incorporated into larger developments, predominantly housing association properties. Where possible the developments will have a “Learning Zone” attached, providing education and training to tenants and other people living in the area.

Architect's Drawing of Maison Rouge

Oswald Stoll Foundation's development in Fulham

August 3, 2005