Devonshire Rd loses a bar-restaurant and gains a financial services business

Image above: Vacant premises of The Italian Job

The premises where The Italian Job used to be has found a buyer

Hounslow Council’s planners have agreed to a change of use to the premises on Devonshire Rd where the Italian Jon bar-restaurant used to be.

The popular bar and restaurant, which served an excellent spaghetti carbonara and had a choice of Italian craft beers, became too successful for the site. The parent company decided to close up in Chiswick and open a bigger bar-restaurant in Canary Wharf.

The premises on Devonshire Rd have remained closed for over a year, and some have questioned the viability of running another restaurant in a street which already has several – including four Italian food places – although two more restaurants have opened since The Italian Job closed. The Whistling Oyster is a new business and Old Town Deli has changed from a grocers to a wine bar.

The Council received an application (P/2023/1684) seeking permission to convert the vacant property into a space for Killick & Co, the financial services business. While the proposal has garnered support from some quarters, a single objection was lodged based on concerns about the loss of historic shop use and the perceived unsuitability of office use for this particular site.

The borough planning team determined that the principle of office use in this “secondary business parade” was acceptable, although the description will not endear them to those who tun . They further concluded that granting permission for the conversion would not cause harm to neighbouring properties or adversely affect the site’s appearance.

Before final approval can be granted, the plan may need to be reviewed by the borough’s planning committee.

Devonshire Road faces numerous challenges, including several vacant units. Existing business owners have expressed concern about a number of issues: high rents, energy bills, inflation, difficulties in hiring staff, and a failure of revenue to return to pre-Covid levels.

Read more stories on The Chiswick Calendar