Ensleigh Cottage, Granville Road, Lansdown
Ensleigh Cottage is a late 19th century dwelling, now a garage, situated within the contemporary Ensleigh housing development in the Bath World Heritage site. It is ancillary to Ensleigh House, a Grade II Victorian detached house, along with additional material infrastructure such as the boundary wall along Granville Road.
BPT has some concerns regarding the proposed alterations to this previously-approved scheme (see application 18/04438/FUL), namely the changes to the elevations facing Granville Road. We feel that the increased height and incongruous change in materials is of an aesthetic detriment to the streetscape, and is contrary to claims made in the D&A Statement that “the building is lower than the existing and employs a well modelled, broken up form to reduce its scale and nestle into the landscape.” In order to mitigate this visual impact, we would advise the consideration of a single-storey extension to the east or west elevation to ensure the roofline stays low and consistent with the hillside slope.
We additionally maintain that this application has missed the opportunity to positively incorporate the existing garage structure into the proposed dwelling. Whilst the new dwelling describes itself as “unashamedly contemporary”, the retention of at least part of the garage building could create a desirable visual contrast with the new-build whilst retaining a valuable remainder of the historic streetscape and a tangible connection with the Grade II listed Ensleigh House. We feel that there has been no suitable justification for the garage’s demolition in either this application or the previous 2018 application, and the historic and aesthetic interest of the garage structure does not appear to even be acknowledged.
BPT would therefore strongly recommend that this application is reconsidered to maintain a low roofline along the length of the boundary wall, and alternative designs are submitted in which the office space is situated along the main east or west elevations as a suitably unobtrusive addition. We would also advise that the existing garage be, at least partially, incorporated into the new-build to help preserve a positive aspect of the character area.