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Planning permission granted to restore historic Athlone House

PUBLISHED: 15:19 09 September 2016 | UPDATED: 16:53 09 September 2016

The vision for Athlone House from SHH Architects

The vision for Athlone House from SHH Architects

Archant

Following the hard work of the Highgate Society to protect Athlone House, Camden Council has given permission for the new owner’s vision

Athlone House has been fiercely safeguarded in the courts by the Highgate Society over the yearsAthlone House has been fiercely safeguarded in the courts by the Highgate Society over the years

Councillors at Camden Council voted unanimously for planning permission to be granted to restore the historic mansion and gardens standing on the edge of Hampstead Heath.

Highgate Cllr Sally Gimson said: “We really, really welcome that this has finally happened after many years. It’s a fantastic scheme.”

Mikhail Fridman, a businessman and father-of-four originally from Ukraine, bought the house in January.

He previously told the Ham&High: “It intrigued me that the building had originally been designed as a family home about 130 years ago for a wealthy industrialist working in London.

“It felt like fate that I, as a businessman, would be similarly drawn years later to the same property and grounds.”

He plans to renovate the mock Georgian house, and design a six-bedroom family home, complete with separate accommodation for security and a swimming pool.

SHH Architecture said they will be guided by the original 19th century designs, including details such as the Dutch gables, castellations on the tower and heraldic beasts.

Athlone House was originally built in 1871, but many of the architectural features were removed during WWII when it was used as a secret RAF intelligence base, and then as an NHS hospital.

In October last year, former owner Athlone House Limited lost a High Court battle to demolish the building and replace it with a £80m palace with a basement car park.

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