English Heritage have complained to Greenwich Council about new signs promoting Charlton House, which have been placed outside the Jacobean mansion.
The two signs, in the council’s house style, use stock photos to advertise the Grade I-listed venue’s availability for weddings, meetings, and other events.
Charlton Society chair David Gardner, which is also chair of the Greenwich & Woolwich Labour Party, said he was unaware that the signs would be installed but that the heritage body had complained to the council.
The revelation came at the Charlton Society’s annual general meeting on Saturday, where the council’s management of the house was repeatedly criticised.
Plans for Charlton House’s management to be taken over by a specific trust have been scrapped by council leader Chris Roberts, with it now to be run by a trust which looks after all of Greenwich borough’s community venues.
Charlton Society president Lord Gough – a descendant of the Maryon Wilson family which owned the house – voiced his regret at the collapse of the plans, while Gardner complained the council was “not talking to us” about the future of Charlton House.
The new signs point potential customers to the council’s website, despite the council having recently launched a new website for Charlton House. A previous website for Charlton House, which cost £3,500 to develop, lasted only two years.
The meeting also saw Charlton councillor Allan MacCarthy appeal for people to get in touch with council chief executive Mary Ney (mary.ney [at] royalgreenwich.gov.uk) if they wished to complain about the Run to the Beat event, while assembly member Len Duvall said Greenwich Council and organisers should either improve arrangements and information or axe the event.
The meeting was also addressed by Greenwich & Woolwich MP Nick Raynsford, who spoke about the opportunities – and dangers – presented by riverside developments. You can hear some of his speech below.