Flat 4, 20 The Paragon, Walcot, Bath
20 The Paragon forms part of a Grade I late-18th century terrace of townhouses at 1-21 The Paragon, situated within the Bath Conservation Area and World Heritage Site. Formerly a self-contained dwelling, it has since been converted to residential flats. It is overlooked by the adjacent Grade II raised pavement and the Grade II late 18th century terraced townhouses at The Vineyards, whilst the steep slope to the east provides The Paragon with elevated views over Walcot Street to the rear as well as largely unobscured views across the terrace’s backland elevation. The Paragon is one of Bath’s earliest ‘crescent’ constructions, pre-dating works on the Royal Crescent, and is therefore a significant evidential aspect of the Georgian Town Planning and Georgian Architecture OUV of the World Heritage Site. It possesses strong group value as part of a “monumental ensemble[s]” of interconnecting, grandly articulated terraces to the west via Lansdown Road.
The focus of works is in the uppermost flat at third storey level, situated within the roof space. The proposed retrofit measures would be applied to the front and rear dormer windows.
In response to the Climate Emergency, BPT is generally supportive of sensitive energy retrofit measures, where deemed appropriate, within the historic environment, as well as the sympathetic upgrade of 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 associated thermal improvements where this does not result in harm to, 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, although we note the overall benefits resulting from the installation of secondary glazing should be considered as part of a ‘whole house’ approach.
The installation of secondary glazing would result in very limited harm to historic fabric, restricted to the proposed fixing points.
However, we recommend that the proposed sections of the secondary glazing system should include contextual sections of the system in relation to the existing windows to ensure that the secondary glazing is of an appropriately slim profile as to sit inconspicuously behind the historic casements. Alternatively, the provision of measurements in relation to the proposed secondary glazing frames would enable for comparison with the main windows. We welcome further information regarding how the secondary glazing would be secured to the existing windows. Currently, it remains unclear as to how the proposed secondary units would interact with the original windows and we emphasise that this should be clarified before this application progresses further.
BPT welcomes the opportunity to support the applicant in reaching an acceptable solution and we encourage them to contact us to discuss their proposals.