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Thousands object to 'ugly' £1.5bn Liverpool Street station revamp plans

An impression of inside Liverpool Street Station should the redevelopment go ahead (Sellar/MTR)
An impression of inside Liverpool Street Station should the redevelopment go ahead (Sellar/MTR)

More than 2,000 people have raised objections to plans to redevelop London Liverpool Street railway station, with many calling the designs “ugly”.

The controversial £1.5 billion overhaul contains proposals for a rooftop pool and will be built by Sellar - the firm behind The Shard - if blueprints are approved.

There would also be offices built, hotel space constructed and part of Liverpool Street demolished to make way.

Documents submitted to the City of London planning authority in October suggest a 20-storey tower be built atop the Grade II* listed railway station.

By that time, the public had shared their opinions on the planning portal, with 2,154 individuals posting objections and 29 voicing their support.

Sellar has said that the redesign is needed to "help London to maintain its status as a world-class city - at no cost to passengers or the taxpayer".

The concorse of London Liverpool Street (Lucy North/PA Wire)
The concorse of London Liverpool Street (Lucy North/PA Wire)

But Westminster Council and Historic England are both among those to have objected to plans while members of the public are also resistant.

Luke Christodoulou wrote: “[They are] ugly and uninspired… unsympathetic to the city's heritage.”

Pascal Dubois-Pélerin added: “Architecturally the project is really a fist in the face.

“The whole thing makes a mockery of the existing buildings, particularly the listed ones, of the area, and of common sense in general.”

Marie Clements, spokesperson for The Victorian Society, complained that the proposals are without precedent for a grade-II listed building.

She said: "The Victorian Society and 10 other amenity societies and heritage organisations believe that if these plans are approved it would set a terrible precedent which would mean that no listed building is safe from harm."

Liverpool Street is now the busiest station in London, thanks to the Elizabeth line being introduced, with 80 million now using it every year.

James Sellar, chief executive of Sellar, said: "In the context of the number of objections received, these should be balanced against the circa 130 million passenger journeys that would be improved should these essential upgrades to Liverpool Street station be approved.

"Our entire approach prioritises protecting and enhancing the historic elements of both the Great Eastern Hotel and of the station itself.”

London councillors are set to decide on the final outcome.