Site Adjacent To Old School House, Chapel Row, Bathford
The application concerns the site adjacent to the Old School House on Chapel Row. It is situated within the Bathford conservation area, and forms part of the indicative landscape character of the Bath World Heritage site. Chapel Row remains characterised as a narrow private lane with a prevalent material texture of Bath stone ashlar or rubble stone; the undeveloped garden site adjacent to the Old School House is visually prominent due to the size of the plot and the elevated slope of the land.
BPT responded to the previous application for this site (see application 17/04472/FUL), and we maintain our position in relation to this resubmission.
We maintain that the prevailing use of timber cladding on the southern half of the proposed building is inappropriate given that the local context is largely either Bath stone ashlar or rubble stone. The additional inclusion of a tall timber boarded fence adjacent to the roadside is highly inappropriate, and will likely result in the visual ‘closing-in’ of Chapel Row’s already narrow streetscape, with resulting harm to the heritage assets within the lane and the overall character and atmosphere of this locality of the Bathford conservation area. We maintain that development on the site should be designed to contribute to and enhance Chapel Row’s appearance, character, and amenity, rather than being screened off from its contextual setting.
One important further point is that there does not appear to be any further elaboration on the impact of works on the RPA of the copper beech tree in the garden of the Old School House. The northern half of the proposed building will be situated further into the RPA, an area that was intended to be left undeveloped as a “vegetable patch” as part of application 17/04472/FUL, and therefore we would strongly advise that the implications of this extended design footprint are considered with regards to the protection of an adjacent mature tree.