Campaigners enjoy sweet success as they save British Sugar offices in Peterborough

The British Sugar offices that have been declared to be of historic value. ENGEMN00120120907121501
The British Sugar offices that have been declared to be of historic value. ENGEMN00120120907121501
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Heritage campaigners look to have saved a landmark building in Peterborough from demolition.

The glass cube building, which is part of the British Sugar headquarters in Oundle Road, has been given a Grade Two listing by Historic England.

It means the 1970s’ building, which faced demolition as part of British Sugar’s multi-million pound relocation plans, cannot be altered in any way without special approval from Peterborough City Council.

Imposing the listing, Historic England’s register states the building has special architectural and historic interest.

It states the building is a sophisticated and elegant commercial building that was praised in the contemporary architectural press.

Also of significance is that it was designed by Arup Associates, which Historic England says was at the forefront of the design of commercial and corporate offices in the late 20th century.

It is another blow for British Sugar which had its plans to demolish the buildings to make way for a Lidl supermarket and 70 homes rejected by councillors in December.

The company had recently submitted a second application with an increased number of so-called affordable homes to meet councillors’ concerns.

Now, following the decision by Historic England, which came after members of Peterborough Civic Society had pleaded with the heritage body to take action, the company will have to look again at its proposals.

A spokesperson for British Sugar said: “We were surprised to receive the news that part of the old British Sugar site on Oundle Road has been Listed.

“We will now take time to understand what this means for our current plans at the site.”

A council spokesperson said: “The council will, in accordance with legislation, have due regard to the appropriateness of the development given the Listed status of the building.

“At this time we don’t know if the applicant will wish the council to make a decision on the application, or whether the applicant will withdraw the application and change the proposal.”

Ken Mehmed, of the civic society, said: “Demolition contractors are on site but we’ve been informed they are aware of the Listed status and are co-operating with the council to make sure no damage occurs.”