Royal Crescent Hotel, 16 Royal Crescent, City Centre, Bath
The existing magnolia tree is a recognisable feature as part of the Grade I Royal Crescent frontage, and is indicated to approximately date to the early 20th century. However, the tree has been indicated to be responsible for a number of ongoing stonework issues in the principal elevation of No. 16, as well as movement of the courtyard paving. This damage to historic fabric is likely to get progressively worse and result in irreversible harm or loss of stonework should this go unaddressed. Whilst we recognise that the tree in its current location has come to form a distinctive addition to the setting of the listed building and its wider setting, we consider that its removal is necessary to mitigate harm to the principal façade of a Grade I terrace considered to be a monumental set piece of high significance to the World Heritage Site and its Outstanding Universal Value. The removal of the tree would also allow for a more comprehensive assessment of damage to the building frontage and the undertaking of repair works. We note that there would be additional gains, such as the reinstatement of the unobscured homogeneity of the Crescent façade as it was originally designed, better revealing and enhancing its special architectural interest.