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The Hoover Building
|Town or city||Perivale|
|Design and construction|
|Architecture firm||Wallis, Gilbert and Partners|
John Betjeman described it as, "a sort of Art Deco Wentworth Woodhouse - with whizzing window curves derived from Erich Mendelsohn's work in Germany, and splashes of primary colour from the Aztec and Mayan fashions at the 1925 Paris Exhibition."
Second World War
During the Second World War the Hoover Factory manufactured electrical equipment for aircraft and tanks. The factory operated 24 hours a day, with employees working shifts. The buildings were repainted and camouflaged with netting to avoid being spotted and bombed by German aircraft. During the blitz a lookout post was set up on the roof, and was manned by members of the sales force who were too old for active service. The Hoover Company organised an evacuation scheme, and sent children of employees to live at the homes of Hoover staff in Canada.
Hoover's UK expansion
After the Second World War an additional five-storey building (No.8) was built and stood to the north of the site alongside building No.5. Hoover continued manufacturing upright cleaners at the Hoover Building until the early 1980s when production was moved to the Cambuslang facility. The office remained open at the site for a few more years until it too was eventually closed and Hoover left the site. The building remained empty for many years, slowly falling into disrepair.
In 1989 the supermarket chain Tesco purchased the Hoover Building and sixteen of the seventeen houses that backed onto the Hoover site. Plans were then set in motion to build a Tesco Supermarket at the rear of the site and restore the original building and canteen, and convert them into offices. Work on the site started in 1991 and included the demolition of Building Nos. 5 and 8. Construction of the new supermarket started in January 1992 and was completed in November 1992. Tesco worked closely with English Heritage during design and construction on the site. The new supermarket includes a number of design nods to the original building. The entrance to the supermarket mirrors the fan window design of the Hoover Building's front entrance.
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