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THE HOOVER BUILDING - PERIVALE
Hoover Building Perivale

Located on the North side of the Western Avenue (A40) just West of the Hangar Lane underpass in Perivale, West London, the Hoover building is a stunning example of Art Deco, or 1930’s ‘Moderne. ’The Hoover Building, built for Hoover, the manufacturer of vacuum cleaners, was erected between 1931 and 1935, was designed by the architecture firm Wallis Gilbert and partners and was the office and factory for the Hoover company for many years up to the latre 1980's.

The Perivale site was chosen for the location of Hoover’s Head Office because of its proximity to the Western Avenue (A40), the Great Western railway and the accessibility of the docks from distribution of its product, namely vacuum cleaners.
Hoover Building - right annex
Hoover Building - left annex
The Art Deco building was constructed using “Snowcreate” which is a white concrete that always will stay looking like new even after the harshest of British weathers and .is decorated with bright coloured faience (glazed ceramic inspired by ancient Egypt). At night the building is illuminated with fluorescent green light - which makes the building lighly visible to airlne passenger arrivals to nearby Heathrow airport.

At night the building is bathed in emerald green light, however, following complaints from the neighbouring houses, the lights are turned off at 10pm every night .

Hoover's products were shipped all across the world, however so many other companies copied the Hoover brand and improved on the design and production coststhat the demand for Hoover's products diminished and this eventually resulted in the demise of the factory.

The building was used by Hoover as their main UK Headquarters until the 1980’s when it was listed as a Grade I building.. This took place shortly after the similarly Deco Firestone building (on the A4) was unexpectedly demolished in 1980, when it had been days away from achieving the listed status.

However, by now the concrete structure had deteriorated so badly due to vandalism, weather and general neglect after years of disuse.

Hoover Building - detail
Hoover Building - facade The building was bought by Tesco’s supermarket in 1989 for conversion to a superstore. The site was obtained for £12 million; this was without planning permission, which was a gamble that Tesco’s had to take for such a unique site with such great national and architectural importance.

in 1992, the office block façade and canteen were beautifully restored and much of the original detailing has been preserved, for instance in the wrought iron gates and fencing. F rom the front, the only obvious difference to the structure from its original state is the lettering on the front, which has changed from "Hoover Limited" to "Hoover Building"'.

See Tesco Supermarket built in the 1990's in Art Deco style in sympathy with the main building.

See the V&A Victoria and Albert website "Art Deco Buildings in London" Hoover Factory
Western Avenue, Greenford, UB6 8BW Architects: Wallis Gilbert & Partners, 1931-38.

To order a high-resolution image of the Hoover Building illuminated at night visit artofthestate.co.uk

Opposite the Hoover Building is the Lloyds TSB Bank

Other websites of interest:

GrippWeb.co.uk - a "must see" website- Excellent !! slideshow of photographs of Hoover Building details - slides change every 10 seconds

BBC - BBC THREE - Dreamspaces... Documentaries & Arts: The Hoover Building
UKexpert.co.uk - photograph of the Hoover Building facade
decopix.com - photograph of the Hoover Building taken from Aintree Road side
Buy a limited edition model of the Hoover Building from Islander
Hoover hand-held vacuum cleaners
ART TESCO - The Democratisation of Culture - Tescos
Art Deco London - The Hoover Building

 

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