BPT has been a close follower and supporter of plans to regenerate and re-imagine the historic Sydney Gardens. The project, which was NLHF funded under the ‘Parks for People’ programme, sought to revitalise the gardens which are a well loved local place for recreation and play as well as being historically significant as a rare surviving example of Georgian pleasure grounds. The Grade II & Grade II* listed Brunel railway and associated classical structures runs through the gardens, as does the historic Kennet and Avon Canal.
2019/2021 – Planning Application for Railing Installation in Grade II* Balustrade
Further applications were submitted throughout 2019 for the refinement of previously proposed works, including works to instate iron railings in the top of the Grade II* 19th century balustrade that runs alongside the Brunel railway:
All applications were permitted and works are reaching completion as of Summer 2022.
Application 21/04318/LBA was later submitted in conjunction with earlier application 19/03211/LBA, which had been granted consent. It had been found that the Grade II* balustrade needed to be reinforced with a concrete foundation before the iron railings could be installed. BPT recognised the demonstrated need for works but had strong concerns that the foundations would partially obscure the detailed moulding of the balustrade’s plinth.
Read our response to the 2021 planning application here.
This application was subsequently revised in accordance with BPT’s comments, and was granted consent in January 2022. The installation of the railings is reaching completion as of Summer 2022.
2018 – Planning Application for the Sydney Gardens Project
In Summer 2018, following over 2 years of public consultation and workshops, planning application 18/03451/REG03 was submitted. We found the proposals favourable, in particular the focus and thought that had been applied to the repair and restoration of the Edwardian toilets and other historic structures in the gardens. We have always been clear in showing our concern and regret that the scope of the project could not include any much needed repair and restoration work to the neglected Brunel structures that form part of the ‘theatre of train’ through the gardens. These structures remain under the direct control of Network Rail and it remained ambiguous throughout the project as to their involvement.
Read our response to the 2018 planning application here.