‘I can’t believe I can walk to the Thames in minutes’
bptw in 2010. Housing associations must make money to build more affordable homes, so the architects proposed five open-market threestorey mews houses to the rear. As part of the deal, the Up the Creek Comedy Club was restored.
The new six-storey brick blocks of one-, two- and three-bedroom flats, plus some duplexes, hug the street front. The façade is flattish, while the back runs along a lane, with the boxy mews houses on the other side.
The planners agreed to the architects’ wish to mass closer than usual, which gives a medieval, sociable feeling. “And as much glass as possible,” says project architect Pete Woodford. All the flats are higher spec than the London Plan, RETIRED GP Phyllis Campbell, left, moved into a private penthouse duplex on the fourth and fifth floor at The Gramercy Greenwich in September last year. The views are fabulous — from her big, south-facing terrace she can see the Royal Observatory one way and the London Eye the other.
Campbell, 72, raised her family in a big old house in Shooters Hill where she lived for 35 years and knew all her neighbours. “My friends teased me because I said I wasn’t moving anywhere without a back door.”
Her family eventually persuaded her to try it. From a five-bedroom house with one bathroom she now has three bedrooms and three bathrooms.
Her spacious living room with pale solid oak parquet floors and white walls is at the top, with its balcony. The bedrooms are below. The children and grandchildren all love it and so does Campbell.
She is working on her friends to move, too. “I couldn’t believe I could walk to the Thames in minutes, and am surrounded by the ever-changing sky, and birds. And the transport is amazing.”
She is fit and active, but all the duplex flats are “future-proofed” — designed so that a lift could be put in if ever one was needed.