18 Devonshire Buildings, Bear Flat, Bath
18 Devonshire Buildings forms one half of a pair of Grade II early 19th century terraced dwellings situated within the Bath conservation area and World Heritage Site. It forms part of a series of terraced Grade II late 18th century to mid-19th century dwellings along Devonshire Buildings. There is some variety in the mix of building heights, roof profiles, and articulation across the principal northern façade which indicates a narrative of later change and alteration, although this elevation is largely obscured from public view within generous front gardens. Unusually, the more informal shared rear elevation is pushed up against the roadside to the south and is therefore of greater aesthetic accessibility whilst clearly defining an area of distinctly backland character. 18-19 Devonshire Buildings form part of an architecturally homogenous pair with tripartite first floor windows and a shared parapet line and M-pitch roof. 19 Devonshire Buildings has already had PV panels mounted on the inner southern roof slope from 2010 (see application 09/04455/FUL); it is noted that these existing in-situ panels are not publicly visible from street level.
In light of the Climate Emergency, BPT is broadly supportive of the opportunity for energy efficiency retrofits where this is coherent with, and sympathetic to, the historic environment and the special interest of a listed building.
We are therefore supportive of the mounting of PV panels on the inner roof slope where this would be of negligible visual impact to the special architectural or historic interest of a listed building. The position of the panels on the inner roof slope would ensure that these are appropriately screened from public view.
However, we strongly recommend that further specifications and material details are submitted as part of this application to clarify the panel type, appearance, and finish. We maintain a preference for the use of monochrome, matte black panels where possible to minimise possible reflectivity and ensure a minimal and recessive appearance. We refer to Policy SCR2 of the Core Strategy and Placemaking Plan for appropriate guidance on the design and finish of roof-mounted solar PV.