Some of London’s most prestigious and historic retail precincts have just been given special character protection under new planning rules from Westminster Council.
Among them is Savile Row, famous for its tailors, where it is now harder for developers and landlords to dilute the areas’ distinctive character by allowing chain stores to force out smaller independent businesses.
Harley Street, Mayfair, St James’s, Jermyn Street and Portland Place have also been protected but with a different set of rules for each.
Over on Savile Row, from now on all new stores must trade in “bespoke tailoring uses”, “sell bespoke, unique, limited-edition or one-of-a-kind products”, and are “complementary to the character and function” of the precinct.
The character of the area came under fire in 2012 when Abercrombie and Fitch controversially opened a kidswear store on Savile Row in 2012.