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Thousands sign petition to save Belsize Park petrol station

PUBLISHED: 11:34 28 September 2017 | UPDATED: 11:42 28 September 2017

Nicky Patel (middle) has launched a petition to save the BP garage Picture: Linda Grove

Nicky Patel (middle) has launched a petition to save the BP garage Picture: Linda Grove

Archant

More than two thousand people have signed a petition to stop one of the last remaining petrol stations in Belsize Park from closing.

The closed XO restaurant in Belsize LaneThe closed XO restaurant in Belsize Lane

The BP garage on Haverstock Hill which has been run by the same family for 15 years, could be facing demolition after the landlord notified them around six weeks ago that their lease would not be renewed after 2020.

It has been suggested that the owners of the BP Station plan to replace the garage, which also houses a popular florist, with an expanded hotel.

This comes as a second petition has been set up to “help save Belsize Village” following the sudden closure of the popular XO restaurant in Belsize Lane with rumours that it is to become a Coop.

Belsize community campaigner Linda Grove said: “Both will be huge blows for the Belsize community. To lose our local petrol station and the popular XO bar would not only ruin local businesses but the nature of the whole village.”

A petition to save the petrol station has reached nearly 2,500 signatures in less than a week.

Nicky Patel, whose family runs the petrol station, said “The petrol station is a necessary amentity for all of our customers. If this goes, there isn’t anywhere else. We even have emergency ambulances from the Royal Free hospital coming to refuel.”

An online petition to ‘save Belsize village’ can be found here

In 1994, a previous landlord submitted plans to replace the garage with a hotel but it was rejected by Camden Council.

No new application has been officially submitted yet but a pre-planning advice meeting has taken place with Camden Council officers.

The fears over the petrol station come as the sudden closure and boarding up of the XO eaterie in Belsize village has sparked rumours that the former pub site will reopen as a Coop supermarket.

XO owner Will Ricker, of Ricker Restaurants, denies this and says that the temporary closure is for refurbishment.

A spokesman for Coop said it had no specific plans to open on the site.

Gerald Eve, who manage the petrol station site for owners Harmsworth Pension Fund were approached for comment.

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