Lansdown House Camden Row Lansdown Bath
Objection: The Trust still has a number of concerns regarding this scheme despite the substantial changes submitted. We question whether this should be registered as a new application given the scale of change to the scheme and the use of new architects, or at least a new application form as the current one still details 4 dwellings.
Overdevelopment of the plot
The extant 1 dwelling scheme remains in our view the better and most appropriate scheme for this sensitive plot. In design terms the extant house was broken down in form (with a stepping down to one storey at the western end) and glazing, giving it a lightweight appearance. The current proposals try to squeeze extra living units on this constrained plinth have at least been decreased but we still feel that overdevelopment is an issue, not least that it appears one house will have an orchard and the other practically no amenity space.
Design and energy efficiency
We find the design composition to be arbitrarily contemporary with a ‘boxy’ form and therefore seemingly uninformed or inspired by local context. Whilst the materials are broadly of the local palette the rubblestone proposed looks to be a Cotswold style not Bath. In particular we are concerned regarding the small gap between the houses which is thermally inefficient, unnecessary and contrary to the tradition of terraces both in this area and overall in Bath. The scheme looks to be an assertive and discordant intervention into the grain of the local townscape which is characterised by architectural harmony and has a visual quality that makes it an important hillside within the WHS. The scheme fails to reference or reinforce local distinctiveness or to respect the character of the surrounding townscape; it therefore is contrary to key Placemaking Plan policies relating to local character and distinctiveness (D2) and infill development (D7).
We continue to be deeply concerned regarding the erosion of the historic wall that is proposed, especially as we have doubts regarding the accuracy of the current proposals with regards to how many cars can adequately park in this area. It looks currently as if there will be no room for car doors to open if four cars are parked there. We find the entran report to be somewhat lacking; it is not accurate regarding bus services or bus stop quality, takes no cognisance of steep gradients separating the site from facilities and the swept path analysis fails to show the sycamore tree across the road from the car park. We are concerned regarding the state of the pennant slabs that have been damaged already as part of the groundworks and would ask that the case officer ensure that further works to this site are managed so that heavy vehicles are kept to a minimum.
The proposed scheme fails to maintain or enhance the character and appearance of the conservation area, potentially harms the setting of nearby heritage assets and would therefore detract from the special qualities of the World Heritage Site, particularly in its relationship to the distinctive appearance of this hillside cityscape. Therefore the proposal would be contrary to the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas Act) 1990, Section 16 (Conserving and enhancing the historic environment) of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), policies; B1, B4 and CP6 of the B&NES Core Strategy and policies CP6, D.2, D.5, HE1, D.7, B4, BD1 of the Placemaking Plan. We would therefore recommend that the application is refused.