Public Toilets, High Street, Upper Weston

Conversion and extension of former public toilet to form 2no two bedroom flats.
Our Response

The proposed site of development is currently occupied by a disused set of public toilets along the high street of Upper Weston. It is situated within the Bath conservation area and World Heritage site, and is next to the Grade II Pen Hill Farmhouse, a 17th century farmhouse, now a private dwelling.

BPT has no comments regarding the proposed design of the development.

We acknowledge the similarity of this application to the previously rejected scheme (see application 18/00723/FUL). Therefore, we would object to this application due to the continued lack of adequate parking facilities or private outdoor amenity space that will have a negative impact on the visual and social character and public amenity of the conservation area.

In accordance with Policy ST7 of Bath’s Core Strategy and Placemaking Plan, C3 residential properties within the Bath Outer Zone are required to provide a minimum of two parking spaces per two-bedroom dwelling, and three parking spaces per four-bedroom dwelling. As the proposed development constitutes two separate two-bedroom flats, the current iteration of this scheme has not delivered the required amount of parking; we are concerned that this will result in an increased overspill of roadside parking with a consequent impact on the aesthetic character of the streetscape as well as the area’s residential amenity, impacting both road users and local residents contrary to Policy D6 of the Core Strategy and Placemaking Plan.

Furthermore, the current application maintains a distinct lack of outdoor amenity space, which we maintain is out of character with the appearance of this portion of the Bath conservation area. Upper Weston remains a medium density district outside of Bath in which all dwellings feature some form of outdoor amenity space. Furthermore, some of the gardens and green spaces facing onto the high street are positive features within the conservation area that contribute to the street’s verdant appearance and complement the typically rural appearance of some of Upper Weston’s historic buildings.

Ultimately, we feel that this application constitutes an overdevelopment of the site; whilst we are supportive of the development potential of this brownfield site, we feel that the construction of two two-bedroom dwellings is too intensive, and is not adequately provided for with regards to garden space and parking which will neither conserve nor enhance the material and social character of this part of the conservation area. We maintain that due to the similarities between this application and application 18/00723/FUL, the previous refusal remains relevant. This application is therefore contrary to the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990, section 16 of the NPPF, and Policies B1, BD1, CP6, D1, D2, D4, D6, D7, HE1, and ST7 of the Core Strategy and Placemaking Plan, and should consequently be refused or withdrawn and reconsidered.

Application Number: 19/05208/FUL
Application Date: 12/12/2019
Closing Date: 17/01/2020
Address: Public Toilets, High Street, Upper Weston
Our Submission Status: Object