Images of Royal Tunbridge Wells Town Centre
York Road - Telephone House Site - 2002 / 2003 / 2004

Telephone House, York Road side - July 2002

It is worth noting that the appeallant's expert on Conservation acknowledged often to the ugliness of Telephone House. This has never been in dispute.

Thomas Rothermel, Chartered Architect and Town Planners, writes in the proof of evidence for the Public Inquiry in May 2001:
" 4.5.3. HARMFUL ELEMENTS - Telephone House
This building is so bad in design terms that it is scarcely architecture at all. It is raw and crude, without any grace. Ugly in itself, and crashingly insenesitive to its neighbours and its context.
The height is excessive, the plan form - a crude T - is banal, and its positioning on the site creates awkward left-over spaces, covered in pock-marked tarmac, and the detailed design of the elevation is harsh, ill proportioned and unresolved as a design. The materials are of poor quaility and the forecourt and its enclosing walls are cheap looking and of no quality at all; instead of being called "Syncordia House" it should be called "Discordia House".
The present building represents an alienation to the historic grain both by the building itself and by the expanse of car parking in front, to the side and north of it. As well as the ugliness of the T-shaped block itself, its positioning on the site is harmful, it creates ugly spaces behind Telephone House, and these ugly spaces make a large gap site along the southeren side of York Road, which otherwise consists of small blocks of closely spaces houses which give the impression of a continuous terrace."

Since May 1999 [when Telephone House was declared derelict] BT and its subsequent owners, Southgate Developments Ltd, Crest Homes/Crest Nicholson Plc and CALA Homes, have never made an effort to contribute to the surroundings their ugly building stands in.
A simple clean up would have gone a long way with residents.

With regard to the proposed development CALA Homes should consider the adverse publicity the site has had for over 40 years. This building has been known as a local monstrosity.
Do CALA Homes want to repeat history ?

6 April 2003 - CALA Homes - The Plot is clear: Still no better vision ?

Cala Homes' land - Telephone House site, Tunbridge Wells - View from York Road to Church Road - March 2003

Pretty small the terrain CALA Homes bought - 0.3 hectare or 0.7 acres
Extremely high density they want to achieve - 140 units/hectare or 60 units/acre
CALA Homes want to cram 43 flats onto this land in the Conservation Area of Tunbridge Wells.
Do they really know what they are doing?

20 July 2004 - The achievement of the uncompromising developer CALA Homes

Cala Homes Development, Tunbridge Wells - July 2004

The gap is plugged.
The predicted cramming is accomplished !

CALA Homes prospective buyers will ultimately encounter the same problems as the residents
i.e. lack of privacy, lack of sunlight/daylight, lack of amenities, insufficient parking, living in high density.
Therefore, there is a risk that the CALA Homes development, Church Road / York Road, Tunbridge Wells, will be unsustainable.

25.01.2003 - Before CALA Homes moved in
Impact on the amenities of the area around Telephone House, Tunbridge Wells

Documentation to the Planning Applications:
The Telephone House development, Church Road / York Road, Tunbridge Wells
Internet site of York Road Residents:
- Is the proposed development suitable for this Conservation Area ?

Continue to browse the interactive Map of Tunbridge Wells Town Centre

The Telephone House Neighbours Association, Tunbridge Wells
The aims are to heighten peoples' awareness and concern for the high-density development on Telephone House site, Church Road / York Road, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN1.