Pub in Maida Vale demolished 'without permission'
A pub that was the last building standing in a west London street after the WW2 bombings has been demolished without official permission.
Westminster City Council and the pub's landlady were "shocked" when they heard contractors had razed the building in Maida Vale to the ground.
The council rejected plans in 2014 to pull down the Carlton Tavern in Carlton Vale.
Councillor Jan Prendergast, said: " It came as such a shock to everyone."
"It was the last building standing in Carlton Vale after the WW2 bombings," she added.
"There was no prior warning to the council, no approvals and no proper health and safety procedures in place."
Patsy Lord, the pub landlady, said she had a phone call on Wednesday asking her to move her son's car from outside the building because diggers had arrived.
"When I came round half of it (the pub) was demolished," she added.
Last year the council refused an application to pull down the building and replace it with a new pub at ground level and residential units over several floors above.
Historic England - previously known as English Heritage - was recommending the building for listed status.
The council said it would be seeking legal advice. The owner of the building was not available for comment.