11 – 12 Bartlett Street, City Centre, Bath
11-12 Bartlett Street is an unlisted mid- to late 20th century single storey commercial infill to the rear of the Grade II mid-18th century terrace at Prince’s Buildings, situated within the Bath conservation area and World Heritage Site. The street now forms part of a localised high street, divided from Bath’s main commercial centre by George Street, which incorporates the high pavement at Edgar’s Buildings, Bartlett Street, Edgar Mews, and Alfred Street. Bartlett Street remains a constrained, primarily pedestrian street where historic street surfaces in a mix of cobble setts and pennant stone have been retained. The existing building is clearly a later addition in its form and use of materials, but due to its low profile and recessive appearance remains a neutral feature within the conservation area.
This application therefore offers a positive opportunity for the much-needed refurbishment of the building and its reactivation of this section of Bartlett Street, with benefit to the visual amenities of the conservation area.
The proposed repair and repainting of the timber shopfront is supported, although we recommend further information is supplied regarding the proposed painted colour and finish.
As yet, it is unclear as to the proposed materials, colour, or finish of the proposed fascia sign “The Beckford Canteen” which appears to be applied to the painted stonework on the southern part of the building façade. We recommend further details are submitted in relation to this aspect of the scheme and refer to our guidance document Signs, Adverts, Banners and Awnings for further information on recommended best practice.
However, we have some concerns regarding the proposed hanging signage. BPT has an in-principle resistance to illuminated signage within the conservation area, and particularly within the city’s commercial core where illuminated signage is at odds with Bath’s traditional shopfront character. We further note that no material details have been provided regarding the proposed hanging sign; illuminated signs of this type usually need to be relatively thick in profile to accommodate wiring, etc. and are often acrylic or plastic which would be an unsympathetic material addition to the area. We strongly recommend the illuminated aspect of this scheme is omitted and recommend that any proposed hanging signage is timber and hand-painted to preserve and enhance the character and appearance of the conservation area.
With regards to the proposed tables and chairs, where these are restricted to the existing raised concrete area this would appropriately ensure that the pavement remains clear for pedestrian use.