Olympia Butchers is back in business

Sid Kassabian reaches an agreement with the Council over the rent increase.

It was a six months battle. The Brook Green Residents Association had 500 signatures in a petition against the closure of the Olympia Butchers. Like other businesses in Blythe Road, the butcher could not afford the proposed rent increase by Hammersmith & Fulham Council. Business owners say they the increases would be between 30% and 50%.

Togheter with BGRA, the Sinclair Road Residents Association also came in the defence of local businesses. SRRA said: "Not that long ago, Blythe Road boasted a range of local shops - greengrocers, fishmonger, butchers - which justified its claim to constitute a "village" within our corner of Hammersmith. The disappearance of Sid's shop would bring the last proof needed that there is apparently no place for such a "village" in our community."

The local press covered this crisis in Blythe Road and even a national paper, The Guardian, in an article written by Alexander Chancellor, Hammersmith resident, mentioned that the Council has been "forcing small shopkeepers out of business by imposing enormous rent rises on them". SRRA criticised the Council's "short-sightedness and its apparent neglect of basic community values".

Last week, Sid Kassabian, owner of the Olympia Butchers, has reached a new agreement with the Council that enables him to continue to trade for a year. "Victory!" - celebrates SRRA. Now it is Costcutters' turn. Will the mini market, the two residents associations and over 500 residents need to go in a similar battle again?

Read more:
Crisis in Blythe Road
Question of timing

Sign up for our free weekly newsletter

Comment on this story on the forum