Neighbours get official say over Montreal Arms’ green tiles

Posted On 27 Jun 2022 at 5:55 pm

Neighbours can now have their say about whether or not a developer should be required to replace green tiles he ripped off a Brighton pub.

Since Charlie Southall paid friends to remove the distinctive green tiles from the Montreal Arms in April, residents have been up in arms.

As well as hundreds of dismayed reactions on social media, two local bands have written songs about it – with one performing theirs in a Brighton pub last Saturday night wearing masks with Mr Southall’s face while throwing green beer mats into the audience.

Artist Yvette Driver, who makes miniature models of Brighton buildings as part of her Little Papa Dollhouse project, made a tiny version of the pub with its tiles in disarray.

Artist Yvette Driver’s mini Montreal Arms

Now, the community has a chance to make their voices heard in a more official capacity.

Brighton and Hove City Council issued an enforcement notice giving him one year to reinstate the distinctive green tiles in April.

Last month Mr Southall’s company, Dragonfly Architectural Services Ltd, and its planning agent Connor McCarron lodged an appeal against the notice.

This is now live on the planning inspectorate’s website, which states interested parties have until 3 August to comment.

The appeal, which effectively pauses the enforcement notice, will be heard via written representations only.

Charlie Southall handing out leaflets as his friends begin to hack tiles off the Montreal Arms

The removal of the tiles came days after Mr Southall announced he was pulling a fundraiser for £85,000 to convert the pub into a temporary refuge for Ukrainian women and children.

The plans were well received by the neighbourhood when first announced, but questions were subsequently raised about how much Mr Southall set to personally benefit from the plans – and why he needed money to renovate the building.

Residents now fear he will argue the building is beyond repair and will need to be demolished, particularly after supports were put in place once the tiles were removed.

As well as reinstating the tiles, the enforcement notice says tiles may be removed to repair the window lintels, but must be replaced once that work is done.


  1. Mike Hamilton Reply

    Imagine a world where you can just destroy protected buildings and you get to appeal the order against you.

    I hope he chokes on his weird combover

  2. sd Reply

    Replace the tiles, Charlie.

  3. Jane L Reply

    The council needs to come down very hard on this behaviour. Otherwise, it sends a message to everyone that owns a protected building that you can just hack off bits and pieces of it and get away with it. What he has done is really disgusting and he should be made to repair it with handmade replica tiles. If this makes the restoration uneconomic he can always sell the building as at the right price someone else will take this work on. I’m wondering if there is finance on this building which you can tell on the land registry site. If so the mortgage company should also be informed that he is damaging their investment.

  4. Valerie Reply

    His ‘Ukraine’ attempt at emotional blackmail was despicable. The vandalism of a cherished local heritage asset was just sheer opportunism.

    Weirdly it is similar to what Putin is doing to Ukraine…vandalising with a view to removing viability

  5. Michael Webber Reply

    There is a great company in Lancashire that still makes these traditional Victorian tiles…

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