Pictures show Leith Walk Cafe being boarded up by Drum Property Group

Just one week after the Leith Walk Cafe closed, Drum Property Group has wasted no time in boarding up the now vacant business space.

Thursday, 25th July 2019, 2:22 pm
The cafe closed last week and has already been boarded up (Photo: Save Leith Walk)
The cafe closed last week and has already been boarded up (Photo: Save Leith Walk)

This controversial move by Drum has angered many involved in the Save Leith Walk campaign who feel things could have been handled differently.

The Leith Walk Cafe was forced to close its doors as part of Drum’s plans to demolish the iconic sandstone building at the foot of the walk and build student accommodation in its place.

Drum had previously had their planning proposals rejected by Edinburgh City Council on the grounds that it did not meet Scottish planning law standards.

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The cafe closed last week and has already been boarded up (Photo: Save Leith Walk)

Nonetheless the group decided to exercise an early release clause to evict business operating at the site early from their tenancy agreements.

A Save Leith Walk spokesman said: "Local residents are dismayed that the developer continues to destroy people's livelihoods, close successful shops and ignore the community’s wishes. The people of Leith deserve much better.

"The Save Leith Walk campaign will continue to highlight the widely acknowledged failings in the developer's plan for Stead's Place, as well as the deep-rooted inequalities that exist in Scottish planning law."

A spokesperson for Drum Property Group said: “Since purchasing the Stead’s Place site, Drum Property Group has worked hard to respond to the council’s own brief to bring new investment and development to this neglected part of Leith Walk.

Leith Walk Cafe is being boarded up by Drum Property Group (Photo: Save Leith Walk)

"Our high-quality proposal was shaped by extensive consultation with local people, groups and businesses and received high levels of public support, as well as being recommended for approval by the council’s own planning team.

"As such, we remain wholly committed to transforming the site following the council’s own guidelines and have lodged an appeal with the Scottish Government challenging the council’s subsequent decision not to grant planning approval.

"From the start, Drum has been entirely straightforward, transparent and consistent regarding our plans for the site.”

Critics of Drum have stated that the ‘public consultation’ mentioned above was never genuine nor practical.