Branson's Kensington Roof Gardens to close
3 January 2018, 16:44
Sir Richard Branson has blamed market conditions for the closure of his Kensington Roof Gardens venue in west London.
The site was used for events, showbiz parties, awards ceremonies, weddings and dinners in its restaurant Babylon.
The Grade II-listed building goes back to the 1930s and its attractions included flamingos and a stream.
Virgin became a tenant in 1981 but has confirmed it will not be renewing its lease.
Sir Richard's company said that the challenging market has left the business struggling to make a profit.
"In an ever-changing London market The Roof Gardens has stood the test of time but in the face of unpredictable market conditions and a challenge to remain profitable, we feel that the time has come for us to close our doors," they said.
"We are certain The Roof Gardens will continue to be one of London's most spectacular and extraordinary landmarks and look forward to seeing what's next for this beautiful venue."
Some 85 staff will lose their jobs but Virgin said it was trying to help them find other employment within the group and the hospitality industry.
(c) Sky News 2018: Branson's Kensington Roof Gardens to close