Heritage campaigners have called for the owners of a derelict 19th Century listed cottage to repair it before it is too late.
The Grade II listed cottage at 34 Black Lion Lane, Hammersmith, has lain empty for 20 years and planning permission, granted to 2005, to restore the building and convert it to two homes left unused.
A later application by agents J&B Associates Ltd this year to demolish the building was rejected on the advice of English Heritage.
"We are most concerned that it should be restored and it is very sad the owners have let it decay like this," said Hammersmith and Fulham Historic Buildings Group chairman Angela Dixon.
"The building is boarded up and has been allowed to go to rack and ruin," said St Peter's Residents' Association committee member Alastair Jackson. "There is concern that this neglect is a deliberate attempt to let the building get beyond repair."
Cabinet environment spokesman councillor Nicholas Botterill said props have been installed at the council's request. He added: "The owners also need to tile and fix the roof and we would urge them to do this as soon as possible to protect the building from the elements and, if they refuse, we will not hesitate to take necessary action."
Jonathan Barlow of JB Associates said his client wants to remain anonymous. He explained as work started to convert the building, structural reports revealed it would have been better to replace it with a replica.
Mr Barlow added: "The owner is now considering commencing work as approved next year, however the property market has changed considerably and options will be kept open.
"The owners do not wish to see the building deteriorate further as clearly this is their investment, they have tried to create a longer future for the building but have not had the support of the Local Authority.
"Unless there is a change of policy the work will go ahead as approved, albeit not the most satisfactory solution for the building."
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