IPellicci's Listed: Authentic East End Deco cafe safeguarded for Nation

INew | About | History | Criteria | Reviews | FAQ | Tour | Acclaim | Music | Links | Contact | Book




NEVIO PELLICCI has received a listing letter from English Heritage. "Is it good then? 'Cos we weren't sure."

It certainly is. Caffs don't normally get listed. First, they are rarely design classics. Second, even if they are, they rarely survive intact. But Pellicci's is different.

The unofficial greasy spoon at the heart of East End life has been in the Pellicci family for more than a century, since Nevio's parents bought the building on Bethnal Green Road "around 1900".

And then there's its interior. Built in 1946, Pellicci's is "a remarkable place", coos the letter from English Heritage, salivating over its "deep custard-colour Vitralite frieze", the "intricate Art Deco style marquetry panelling", the "Egyptian style capitals".

But it's no museum. The place hums with regulars from 6.30am, and knick-knacks, snaps of the family, and Charlie the family dog keep the place unpretentious.

"I'm immensely pleased," says Adrian Maddox, the author of the cult book Classic Cafés. "Just like Betjeman would have been when a piece of Victoriana was saved."

If there's a design classic on your high street, write to English Heritage detailing its design features. As Maddox says, "It's our duty to keep the streets safe from blandness."

Tom Dyckhoff (The Times, February 15 2005)

English Heritage records show several other listed buildings that appear to have protected cafes (often Art Deco) attached to them:

The Forum
1-5 Forum Building, Southgate Street, Bath, Somerset
Grade II

Number 20
Bridge Street and Row, Chester
Grade II

ABC Cinema and Regal Ballroom
High Street, Beckenham, Bromley
Grade II

London Opera Centre
Commercial Road, Stepney, London
Grade II

The Top Rank Club (formerly Essoldo Cinema)
Chester Road, Stretford, Trafford, Greater Manchester
Grade II

Nos. 217, 219 and 221
Marine Road, Central Morecambe, Lancashire
Grade II

New | About | History | Criteria | Reviews | FAQ | Tour | Acclaim | Music | Links | Contact | Book