Abercrombie & Fitch’s plans to muscle in on the ancient elegance of Savile Row continue, despite The Chap’s spirited attempts to oust them on April 23rd this year. Westminster Council has not seen fit to place any objection to the American casual wear outlet’s plans to open a children’s store at number 3, Savile Row, but they have voiced concerns about how exciting the opening party should be.
According to various news reports, Westminster Council will not be allowing Abercrombie & Fitch to host a “celebrity-filled opening party”. This strikes The Chap as an extremely vague proviso, since how is the Council to police whether any of the guests at the launch party are celebrities or not? Once the store is open, various rules will be put into place especially for Abercrombie & Fitch, which will not apply to the 100 or so tailors who occupy the rest of the Row.
The store would not be allowed to play music that could be heard on the street, nor would buggies and prams belonging to customers be allowed to park on the outside pavement. These are not the usual habits of customers keeping appointments with their tailors. Abercrombie & Fitch have appealed against the measures – which, incidentally, were put in place following complaints from tailors on the Row and doubtlessly backed up by the attention placed on the cause by The Chap’s protest – and the decision will now be made at a public planning inquiry.
Abercrombie & Fitch’s fight for the right to party on Savile Row comes shortly after the chain reported a 52 percent fall in second-quarter earnings, which has subsequently led to the closure of some US stores and a scaling back of their planned international expansion.