Provisional Trading Licences Granted to Olympia Events Venues

Approval paves the way for opening of bars and restaurants

A visualisation of an arcade within the new centre. Picture: Olympia

May 8, 2024

Plans to fill the Olympia Events venue with restaurants and bars are one step closer to becoming a reality after Hammersmith & Fulham Council approved several provisional trading licences. Landlord Olympus Property Holdings Limited has been given the greenlight to negotiate eight to-be licences with potential vendors during a meeting on Tuesday, 7 May.

It comes as Olympia experiences a £1.3 billion regeneration, according to a website set up to promote the Kensington development. A brochure by Incipio, which is applying for a number of spots at the famed West London venue, says the landmark site should open by May 2025.

Others set to join are a burger shop, a Japanese restaurant and Japanese-inspired rooftop bar as well as an all-day Italian restaurant at the entrance of Olympia, council documents show. There are also plans for a premium rooftop terrace selling Champagne and English sparkling wines, a food hall with a number of ‘best in class’ food brands and a live lounge.

Because building works are yet to be complete, Olympus Property Holdings has applied for a number of provisional statements. This licensing tool provides potential tenants with a means of establishing whether they will be granted a premises licence once building works are complete.

During a marathon six-hour session over two meetings, councillors debated noise controls and crowd management plans fearing letting most premises close at the same time – 11.30pm – could lead to a rush of people in the area and complaints from residents. Olympus Property Holdings’ legal team said not all businesses at Olympia would close at the same time and referenced a café and bakery they said would likely close earlier than rooftop venues.

They also said the provisional statements would not be a ‘blank cheque’ to get any tenant in, adding, “The management issue is one we are taking significant issue in and we are likely to have a management agreement which gives us genuine control.”

According to council documents, most venues will be open between 8am and 11.30pm Monday to Sunday and until 2.30am on New Year’s Eve.

The council has also called on future vendors to chart out how they plan to avoid delivery drivers congregating around the venue. Olympia Exhibition Centre, also known as Olympia London, has been a prime London venue for 130 years, according to council documents.

The site consists of eight main buildings between Hammersmith Road, Olympia Way, Maclise Road, Beaconsfield Terrace Road and Blythe Road. The site was taken over in both World Wars as a temporary civil prison camp by the British Army.

It later became an entertainment venue, hosting artists like Jimmy Hendrix and Pink Floyd in the 1960s. Crufts, the dog show, became a regular event at the site. The same council documents show the venue has needed ‘significant’ investment to keep up with the demands of the exhibition industry in the 21st century.

Ben Lynch - Local Democracy Reporter