Monsoon owner’s London basement development plan angers neighbours

Peter Simon, the owner of high street stores Monsoon and Accessorize, has received planning permission to convert five houses in London’s Chelsea into one dwelling, despite numerous complaints from neighbours.

As part of the plans that were approved by Kensington and Chelsea council, a large basement will also extend beneath the home, with an underground swimming pool, gym, wine cellar and two apartments.

Building work that is necessary for the creation of Mr Simon’s property is expected to continue for more than 12 months, and one neighbour has complained that it will be impossible to relax as a result of the construction noise.

A number of extensions and excavation work will have to be carried out at the row of period properties, to create enough space for the new additions.

One of the residents in a neighbouring property said: “It just seems excessive. If you want a house that big, buy a house that big. Don’t go and buy five and then annoy your neighbours by joining them together.”

Since planning permission was given to Mr Simon, Kensington and Chelsea council have stated that planning policies in the borough have been updated to ensure that any future basement extensions will be under strict controls.

Other London boroughs – including Westminster council – have also placed tighter restrictions on basement developments, due to the impact on surrounding people and properties.

Carter Lemon Camerons LLP (CLC) solicitors is a City law firm which provides legal services with a personal touch to both commercial and private clients. We have a great deal of experience in advising both developers and disgruntled neighbours. Unlike many City practices we are happy to act in private legal matters, bringing the same care and consideration as we do to commercial matters. For more information about CLC please visit: or telephone: 020 7406 1000.