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Beetham Tower gets go ahead

The final go ahead has at last been given to the 170m tall Beetham Tower on the banks of the Thames.

Also called One Blackfriars, the 52-storey building at the southern end of Blackfriars Bridge was originally granted planning permission more than a year ago.

But the Government decided to review the approval based on fears the skyscraper was too tall.

Communities secretary Hazel Blears yesterday gave the stamp of approval on the scheme.

Beetham Organization chairman Hugh Frost said: “This is a much needed boost to London.

“The development is a vital part of the regeneration of the south bank of the Thames, creating an iconic landmark and tourist destination, as well as providing jobs and a total transformation for the area.”

Planning consent was granted by Southwark Council last year, subject to the approval of the Secretary of State and English Heritage.

The developers, Beetham Organization, consulted with English Heritage and agreement was reached to reduce the height of the 52-storey tower to 170 metres.

The Beetham Tower will house a six-star 261-room hotel, complete with ballroom, meeting rooms, a number of restaurants and bars, a high-tech spa, health and leisure facility and a public viewing platform at its highest level.

The tower will also house 64 apartments and a skydeck.

At the tower’s base will be a wrap-around plaza, with cafes, restaurants and shops.

Ian Simpson Architects designed the tower, following on from landmark schemes with Beetham Organization in Manchester and Birmingham.