It’s three lions on the shirt but… one thousand fans in the garden

The Garden ready to open in former factory yard in Kentish Town but neighbours object

Thursday, 17th June 2021 — By Dan Carrier

cnjpicsjune17 Image 2021-06-17 at 08.23.57

How the new venue will look

A NEW outdoor space which claims to be ready to unveil London’s largest screen for the European football championships has triggered a raft of objections.

Neighbours fear the new venture at the back of the Regis Road industrial estate in Kentish Town will lead to drunken late-night noise.

The 1,000-capacity venue is called The Garden and opens next week with the football tournament in full flow. Other entertainment planned by the operators include bingo nights. But residents living nearby say they have not been adequately consulted.

Debby Hyams, chairwoman of the Inkerman Area Residents Association, said: “Our members only recently became aware of a plan to open a massive party venue on land just adjacent to our area, which will clearly have implications for all over Kentish Town.”

Neighbour Dilip Lakhani added: “It will be like having Ayia Napa on our doorstep. We are concerned what this will mean for the high street, and for the neighbouring streets with homes.”

He said he feared the drinks packages for sale – ranging from £60 to £450 a time – could lead to irresponsible alcohol use. He said: “It is basically a vertical drinking warehouse on an industrial estate, and we don’t feel there has been proper consultation as to whether it is suitable.”

The site being prepared yesterday (Wednesday)

Dee Searle, who is a member of the Kentish Town Neighbourhood Forum, added: “I feel this has gone through under the radar, as there was a licensing application but we have not yet seen a planning application.”

General manager Joe McDonagh, who works for the company which is also behind the popular Vauxhall Food Garden, is currently building temporary canopies, bars, food areas and landscaping on what was a factory yard.

He told the New Journal all licensing procedures had been followed and he had worked closely with the Town Hall and police.

“These are temporary structures. We have submitted the planning applications – but it does take time,” he said. “We have spoken with the police and the council, and we have done a lot in terms of policies and procedures.”

The Garden may have the biggest screen in London for the football

He added: “We give them a mobile phone number that is permanently on so we can be easily contacted if any one needs to. “We have sound restrictors in place, and we are hosting an open day for residents on June 24 with free food and drink so they can come and see for themselves.”

Camden Council said the structures on the site would need permanent planning permission after 56 days. It said it would also be working with police to ensure Covid rules were being followed.

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