Demolished Maida Vale Carlton Tavern developers 'thugs'
Developers who knocked down a 1920s west London pub shortly before it was to be given listed status have been called "thugs and vandals".
Maida Vale resident and community activist John Simmance made the comments at a public inquiry into the demolition of the Carlton Tavern.
Developers CLXT Ltd knocked down the pub last year despite being refused planning permission to build 10 flats.
The local authority ordered it to be rebuilt, but the developers refused.
Westminster City Council and local campaigners said it should be rebuilt "brick by brick".
Councillor Rita Begum told the government-ordered inquiry at Westminster City Hall that developers "rode roughshod" over the community.
Mr Simmons said the pub had survived the Blitz, the Westway build and 1960s housing development.
He added that the community did not know that it was at risk of being developed and that if it did, "us Cockney builders and plumbers would have gone down and stopped it".
The developers had wanted to build 10 residential flats above a new pub on the site.
Historic England - previously known as English Heritage - was recommending the 1920s building for listed status.
The owner of the pub has so far been unavailable for comment.
The inquiry continues.