Guest post by Philip Grant
In a blog last week (LINK) ) Martin drew our attention to Quintain's latest consultation on the redevelopment of the "Fulton Quarter" at Wembley Park. This includes the former Fountain TV Studios, whose fascinating story I wrote a guest blog about when it closed last December (LINK)
Although Wembley has lost a fantastic high-tech business, there is something from our local heritage which can be saved when the studio building is demolished. Two lion head architectural ornaments, from the British Empire Exhibition building which was converted to film studios in 1928, were preserved when that building was demolished in 1989. They were re-used to embellish the walls outside a new entrance to the remaining "Studio 5", which became Fountain TV.
The lion was the emblem for the BEE, and it was adopted as a popular symbol for Wembley itself, with both the stadium's speedway team (from 1929) and the arena's ice hockey team (from 1934) known as the "Wembley Lions". Through Wembley History Society, I worked with Brent Council and Quintain to put one concrete lion head (from the Palace of Industry building) on permanent public display in 2014, to commemorate the 90th anniversary of the British Empire Exhibition.
Now I am hoping to persuade Quintain to recycle the two "Wembley Lions" from Fountain Studios, as part of their landscaping plans for the Fulton Quarter. As well as providing an attractive feature in the public spaces which the proposed development promises, this would help to share the stories of Wembley Park and the Wembley Park Studios with future residents and visitors.
I hope that Martin will be able to put a copy of my comments document (submitted to Quintain's consultation) below, so that you can read what I have in mind, if you are interested. If you think my suggestion is a good one, please send your own "comments" on the Fulton Quarter Masterplan, including your support for Philip Grant's ideas for incorporating the BEE / Fountain TV lions into the landscaping scheme, to Quintain at the consultation email address: firstname.lastname@example.org . Thank you.