Asks housing association to get it working again
Acton Old Town Hall on the High Street. Inset: Rupa Huq MP celebrates the completion of the Acton Town Hall redevelopment in 2019 with Mike Johnson (Group Director of Development, One Housing), Cllr Dr Abdullah Gulaid, Mayor of Ealing and Richard Hill (Chief Executive, One Housing)
Ealing Central and Acton MP Rupa Huq has written to the owners of the Acton Old Town Hall urging them to fix the iconic clock on the Hall’s tower “as quickly as possible”.
She contacted One Housing, who redeveloped the Hall into 71 apartments which opened in 2019, on Monday [25 April 2022] after receiving complaints from Acton residents about the stopped clock.
In a letter to the housing association’s Chief Executive Richard Hill, Dr Huq writes, “As the custodians of this fine Grade II-listed piece of local heritage, I would strongly urge One Housing to work proactively to get the clock functioning again as quickly as possible.
“Our Town Hall deserves to be well looked after and for its clock tower once again to be a source of pride – and of the correct time – for residents of Acton rather than the reminder of failure it now seems to be serving as.”
Huq has asked to receive news on “repairs to the clock as soon as practicably possible”, having previously raised concerns about the motionless clock back in October 2021 in writing to no effect.
The lack of action to fix the clock, which first started ticking when the Hall opened in 1910, has sparked annoyance from locals.
One Acton resident who wished to remain nameless told us, “The stopped clock is a complete disgrace to our town centre – why won’t they sort it out after all this time?
“It reflects poorly on our town, and makes the place look uncared for and run down. I hope One Housing will finally recognise that the clock is a symbol of civic pride and get the hands of that clock turning once again!”
The MP said, “At the weekend the umpteenth constituent stopped me in the street and told me what an embarrassment to Acton the broken clock is. I have to say, I completely agree.
“I already raised this with One Housing six months ago, amidst a plethora of other issues that have been raised by residents, yet my plea to do this as a gesture of goodwill without passing on the cost to residents fell on deaf ears. The clock remains out of action and has been for some time to the point that Acton is being failed.
“For that reason, I will keep pressing One Housing to take immediate action to sort out the broken clock – let’s see what comes of this letter.”
Group Director for Development at One Housing Robert Marcantoni said, “Since 2014, One Housing has worked closely with Ealing Council, Historic England, local community groups and residents to redevelop Grade II listed Acton Town Hall and deliver much-needed homes, including affordable homes. The sensitively designed development retains a number of the building’s original features including its façade.
“One Housing has previously presented options for repairing the clock to Ealing Council as the clock had not been working for some years prior to our involvement. We remain happy to carry on working closely with local partners to agree a solution that continues to preserve the heritage of Acton Town Hall.”
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April 29, 2022