A plan by opportunistic developers to crane in extra storeys onto two blocks either side of St John’s Church in Hyde Park Crescent has been defeated – at least for now. Developers wanted to build four extra storeys on each of the Southacre and Castleacre towers. These buildings are already at the absolute maximum height appropriate to the setting next to Grade II listed St John’s Church, a notable example of Georgian Gothic designed by Charles Fowler in 1829 to be a focal point at the centre of the Hyde Park Estate street layout. Many of those occupying the towers themselves opposed the applications. More than 20 objections per application were filed with Westminster Council on grounds of damage to a conservation area, among other things, through excessive height and mass and overshadowing – including of the trees recently planted to commemorate the late Queen’s Platinum Jubilee and the HPEA’s own 70th anniversary. The developer withdrew the applications, filed in August when many residents were on holiday, in October. However another developer is trying again to put ugly telecoms towers on top of the buildings. Planning permission was rejected following scores of objections from Southacre residents in 2020. However, Ofcom’s Electronic Communications Code gives operators considerable powers to push these kinds of applications through. We will keep residents informed of any developments.