140-year-old Art Deco sausage shop saved from closure by heritage grant

Two South London heritage sites have been saved from decay and neglect by a public body that looks after England’s historic buildings.

Historic England has today revealed its Heritage at Risk Register 2023. The register gives an annual snapshot of the health of England’s valued historic buildings and places. 

Significant sites saved and removed from the register include Kennedy’s Sausage Shop, at 305 Walworth Road, Elephant and Castle, a famous Art Deco shop that is now home to the LaoDao restaurant serving Xinjiang Chinese cuisine.

Kennedy’s is one of the oldest shops in South London – running for nearly 140 years (Picture: Historic England)

The first Kennedy’s shop opened at 140 Rye Lane, Peckham in 1877, then over the years the company opened nine branches across South-east London.

But in 2007 the company, which had been run by the same family for 130 years, stopped trading.

Despite the end of the business, the old sausage shop remains and is one of the oldest shops in South London – running for nearly 140 years.

The famous Art Deco shop is now home to the Laodao restaurant, serving Xinjiang Chinese cuisine (Picture: Historic England)

The Grade II listed building is a well-preserved example of a 1920s shop, with an original shopfront, brightly coloured internal tiling and original fittings including mirrors and a polished glass front which still announces ‘305 KENNEDY 305’.

The new owners were given a grant of £33,975 by Historic England in 2022 for repair and restoration of the original interior and shop front. These works were carried out in partnership with Southwark council under the Walworth Road Heritage Action Zone scheme.

Another site saved this year is the electricity substation in Sunnyside Passage, Wimbledon. This late 19th century cast iron substation was one of the first in the country to be installed.





One of the country’s first electricity substations has also been saved (Picture: Historic England)

It was added to the Heritage at Risk Register in 2015, due to rusting and graffiti on the outside of the substation, but has now been fully refurbished, including restoration of its original paint colour, with funding from UK Power Networks with support from Merton council, Heritage of London Trust and The Wimbledon Society.

Arts and heritage minister Stephen Parkinson said: “It is heartening to see that so many sites have had their futures secured and have been taken off the Register over the past year thanks to the hard work of Historic England and local people.

The substation was recently refurbished by Heritage of London Trust (Picture: Historic England)

“I look forward to the new additions to the register receiving similar care and attention so that future generations can continue to enjoy and learn from our rich heritage for years to come.”

Pictured top: Kennedy’s Sausage Shop was saved by a grant of £33,975 from Historic England in 2022 (Picture: Historic England)

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