US retailer Abercrombie & Fitch has been fined for painting the interior of a Grade II-listed building on Savile Row without permission.
Abercrombie’s operating company AFH Stores UK and co-defendant Castletech Construction were fined nearly £16,000 in total by Westminster Magistrates’ Court on June 3 for a breach of a conditional listed building consent at the Abercrombie Kids store at 3 Savile Row.
Abercrombie was fined £3,000 and ordered to pay a £120 victim surcharge and £5,323 in costs. Contractor Castletech was fined £3,000 and ordered to pay a £120 victim surcharge and £4,139 in costs. The council published the ruling on July 7.
Under planning conditions, the retailer was not permitted to undertake any internal decoration before a paint specification and colour scheme was approved by the local authority, Westminster City Council.
The court found Abercrombie and Castletech acted in full knowledge that the work was not permitted and they were equally culpable.
A spokeswoman for Abercrombie & Fitch said: “We are pleased that this issue has been resolved. Abercrombie and Fitch takes its responsibility to protecting the heritage of its stores seriously.”
Robert Davis, deputy leader of the council, said: “Heritage is the number one factor that makes Westminster what it is today, so the council will seek to protect it wherever we can.
“The history and features of this building, including the famous Beatles rooftop concert [in 1969], need to be respected, as does the heritage of Savile Row itself. It has certainly been a long and winding road to get this judgement, but we are glad the court has agreed with us.”
In 2012 Savile Row tailors protested against Abercrombie’s proposal to open the kidswear store, but the launch went ahead on August 30, 2014.