7 The Circus, City Centre
7 The Circus forms part of a Grade I Georgian circular terrace situated within the Bath conservation area and World Heritage site. It forms part of the monumental design of Bath’s residential centre, contributing to the setting of other grandly designed townhouse ensembles of Grade I status such as the Royal Crescent, St James’s Square, and Queen Square. 7 The Circus additionally backs onto Royal Victoria Park, a Grade I Park and Garden that is a late Georgian example of a municipal park. Therefore, changes to the rear of the building could be considered to have some limited visual impact on the park’s urban setting, particularly as viewed from Gravel Walk.
Initially, the Trust would emphasise that we do not condone works to a listed building, or the setting of a listed building, without appropriate planning permission.
However, considering the contemporary origin of the existing balustrade, we think there is scope for improvement, and the proposed design is suitably minimal and recessive within the setting of a listed building. The insertion of two sets of steps from the terrace to the lower garden feels more suitable and balanced in its symmetrical framing of the house’s rear elevation.
We do feel that more information could be provided regarding the proposed design of the railings. Whilst we appreciate that the increased space between the spindles has resulted in a less fussy appearance than previously proposed, we would like to see some consideration of a railing design that embodies some aspects of traditional detailing and finishes. We might suggest the wrought iron railings on the Circus or the Royal Crescent as suitable precedents, finished in black with simple finial heads.