Scheme becomes first supermarket to be given protected status

A Sainsbury’s store in north London designed by Nicholas Grimshaw has become the first supermarket to be given protected status.

The retailer commissioned Grimshaw’s firm to come up with proposals to transform a former industrial site in the heart of Camden back in the 1980s.

The store, which has now been listed at grade II, is part of the Grand Union complex, named after the nearby canal, that was built between 1986 and 1988. It also includes a terrace of houses which have been listed at grade II as well.

Recommended for listing by Historic England, the heritage body’s chief executive Duncan Wilson said: “The Camden Road Sainsbury’s is an outstanding example of High Tech architecture in a busy urban setting.

“It is an unapologetically futuristic building which also sits comfortably alongside its historic neighbours.”

High Tech architecture is described as a style which borrows from the worlds of engineering and construction.

Heritage minister Rebecca Pow, who awarded the listing, said the development was a prime example of architects and clients working with local authorities "to create developments which are both functional and appropriate for their surroundings”.