A Chelsea Square Trolley-Bus Proposal. To the Editor of The Times (31 July 1937)
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[ 765 A Chelsea Square Trolley-Bus Proposal To the Editor of The Times The Times (31 July 1937) 8 Sir, – Paultons Square is a quiet residential neighbourhood in Chelsea, lying between the King’s Road and Chelsea Embankment. It possesses considerable architectural charm, having been symmetrically designed early in the nineteenth century, and its gardens contain some exceptionally fine trees. Hitherto its freedom from through traffic has made it safe both for the children of the residents and for more than 300 other children who use it four times a day as a thoroughfare to and from schools near by. The peaceful atmosphere of the square is prized equally by those who live in it and by those who recognize that, as London becomes noisier and more crowded, it is increasingly desirable for London as a whole that the amenities of such places should be preserved. We have learned with consternation of a proposal to allow Paultons Square to be used as turning-route for trolley-buses. To admit trolley-buses to the square would, in our opinion, be to ruin it. The erection of standards andoverheadwireswouldbedestructiveofitscharacterandcharm.Danger to the children who use the square would be considerable, as its roads are narrow and were never intended for through traffic; and expert opinion has been given that the vibration caused by heavy traffic could not fail to cause serious structural damage to the fabric of the houses. In the belief that the preservation of such squares as Paultons Square is on every ground in the interest of London and of Londoners, we desire to add our protest to the protests which residents in the neighbourhood have made against the proposal.1 We are, Sir, yours, &c., Max Beerbohm, Clive Bell, E. F. Benson, David Cecil, Kenneth Clark, W. G. Constable, Crewe, Campbell Dodgson, T. S. Eliot, Arundell Esdaile, Peter Fleming, John Gretton, Wilson Harris, George Hill, A. M. Hind, C. E. M. Joad, Rose Macaulay, Edward Maufe, Charles Morgan, H. V. Morton, Robert Nichols, Charles Peers, Eileen Power, Herbert Read, A. E. Richardson, William Signed Letters and Documents with Multiple Authorship 766 ] Rothenstein, Walter Russell, Osbert Sitwell, J. C. Squire, P. Wilson Steer, Henry G. Strauss, G. M. Trevelyan, Hugh Walpole, Clough William-Ellis, Virginia Woolf, Evelyn Wrench, F. Yeats-Brown, G. M. Young. Note 1. The request for TSE’s supporting signature came from Derek Verschoyle, editor of the Spectator, to which TSE had contributed on several occasions. “The square in which I live is threatened with an invasion of trolley-buses,” Verschoyle wrote on 25 June, including a draft of his letter to the Times and hoping to obtain “about twenty signatures of people whose opinions on such a subject would carry weight. If you approve of the cause, I should be immensely grateful if you felt inclined to allow your name to be added. I do not think that you would disapprove of the company in which you would find yourself.” TSE replied on 28 June that he would sign the enclosure “with pleasure. I like to keep drafts of letters, so that I can know at any moment what I have signed, and I do not think that you need the letter back in order to make use of my signature.” ...