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Big Table

Big Table under threat

The Big Table shop, a familiar part of the local landscape since the 1980s, is under threat of closure and demolition because of the London Crossrail development. Big Table is the shop on Great Western Road, near Meanwhile Gardens, that sells handmade timber beds and many local people get a good night’s sleep on one of their products.

Crossrail say they need the site initially as a depot for the construction of a tunnel from Royal Oak tube station towards Farringdon. Later, the site will house an electrical substation to power Crossrail trains. This will mean demolition of a handsome early-20th century building erected by the Temperance Society as an alcohol-free option for workers on the Great Western Railway. When Big Table took over the premises, it had lain derelict for many years.

At first Big Table was told they’d have to vacate their shop in September of this year, but this was then put forward to 30th January 2012.

One of Big Table’s directors, Stephen Bond, says, “Our beautiful building with its handsome brick frontage will be replaced by a blank wall, making this corner of Great Western Road a bleak and threatening place. It’s taken 30 years to build up this business and we’re faced with the prospect that it will be closed forever – which means the loss of livelihoods for the seven people that work here.”

Co-director, Kim Macrory, adds, “Now, even in the evening, our shop provides a brightly lit landmark for people walking along what can be a lonely and scary pedestrian route from the nearby Westbourne Park tube station. Now that will be replaced by a large electricity substation.”

“Our business has weathered the worst that the recession has thrown at us,” Stephen points out, “and now we’re actually thriving. If not for this threat hanging over us, we’d be advertising for at least two trainees to join the company.”

“We've tried to find out why it is so essential to Crossrail to build its substation here, but they’ve been unable or unwilling to show us why it is so necessary to the project. I can’t help thinking that they could find an alternative if they really wanted to.”

If you’d like to show your support for this popular local business, here’s what you can do:

- Visit the shop and sign the petition opposing Crossrail’s takeover - the petition already has more than 1,500 signatures.

- Sign the online petition to save Big Table by clicking here

- Attend the public meeting on Wednesday 9th November at Paddington Arts, 32 Woodfield Road, W9 2BE, 7.30 pm. Speakers include Murad Qureshi, London Assembly Member.

Big Table
56 Great Western Road
London W9 3BT
020 7221 5058