What businesses thought of a 24 hour Canary Wharf

By Rachel Bishop on August 7, 2014 7:08 AM |

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In response to the announcement Canary Wharf bars and shops could open 24 hours a day from 2015, we asked businesses what they thought.

It comes after Canary Wharf Group's chief administrative officer Camille Waxer, told Retail Gazette the company would consider the move to 24 hour trading to fit in with the 24 hour weekend tube service launching next year.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson announced last year the 24 hour opening of five lines, including the Jubilee Line, on weekends would be the first step towards a 24 hour network.

The idea is still so loose that few businesses around Canary Wharf were prepared to comment on any fledgling plans.

Tesco, which operates 24 hours in some of its stores, declined to comment but Waitrose said it could be a possibility at its Canada Place Mall store, which already has some of the longest trading times on the estate.

A Waitrose spokeswoman said: "Extending our opening hours is not currently in our plans, however we would give it careful consideration should plans go ahead."

A spokesman for Wetherspoon's Ledger Building, West India Quay, said the chain would be unlikely to consider taking up the 24 hour licence.

He said: "We don't feel there's a market for 24 hour drinking really. We are open 16 hours a day as we open for breakfast and go through until late night, but I don't think there's any need to open any longer than that.

"Ultimately we are all in competition as bars along here, but if other pubs decided that opening 24 hours works for them we would applaud them and say good for you, but I don't think it would affect our business."

One of London's most popular and successful 24 hour bars, 24 Hour Polo London, said that if Canary Wharf became a 24 hour area, they would consider setting up a new bar there.

General manager Tadeusz Skowronek said: "95% of our customers who come here eat as well as drink, so we rarely find there's any problem with anti-social behaviour.

"People who come here in the day are often City workers, but late at night we get people from the more popular areas for going out, like Brick Lane, who come here for some food after."

A Tower Hamlets Council spokesman said every business would need to apply for the 24 hour licence and would need to prove a number of things to be granted permission - including whether customers have access to public transport when arriving at or leaving the premises at night time.