27 Oak Street, Westmoreland, Bath
27 Oak Street forms part of a Grade II early 19th century terrace of residential dwellings, situated within the Bath World Heritage Site and the immediate townscape setting of the Bath conservation area. The terrace is modest in scale and form at two storeys with a two-bay frontage in Bath stone ashlar, stepping down the slight south-north slope towards Lower Bristol Road. The terrace as a whole encompasses two ‘halves’ - 1A, 1-5 & 33-38 Oak Street, and 20-28 Oak Street – which were bisected by the introduction of the St James Viaduct, now Grade II*, in 1840.
In light of the declared Climate Emergency, BPT is supportive of sensitive sustainability retrofits, where deemed appropriate, within the historic environment, as well as the sympathetic upgrade of traditional and listed housing stock to better meet modern standards of living. As such, we therefore note a positive opportunity for the sensitive implementation of energy efficiency retrofits and thermal improvements where this does not result in harm or the loss of significant historic fabric.
We are supportive of the principle of installing secondary glazing as a less invasive and easily reversible retrofit measure to improve the thermal performance and residential comfort of a historic building and ensure its long-term, sustainable use. The installation of secondary glazing would result in very limited harm to historic fabric, restricted to the proposed fixing points.
It would be beneficial to include the meeting rail of the existing windows in the proposed sections to enable a more accurate assessment of how the proposed sliding sash secondary glazing system would sit behind, and relate to, the existing windows. We encourage consideration of a slim meeting rail that would be appropriately obscured by the window’s meeting rail in external views.
We note that these proposals relate only to the street-facing elevations and no works are proposed to the windows across the rear. Whilst this is beyond the remit of this application as submitted, we continue to highlight the importance of considering a ‘whole house’ approach in which measures are considered holistically across the entirety of the building, as well as in conjunction with other available measures (eg. insulation). The use of secondary glazing throughout the entire house would have additional benefits in relation to the applicant’s goal to improve the building’s EPC rating from E to C in line with forthcoming local policy.