Sydney Gardens, Sydney Place, Bath
We support the proposed approach to the many elements of this application, however we urge the team to consider the following observations and comments and request that these matters are addressed prior to approval.
Footpaths and balustrade:
We are pleased that the importance of the historic path near the railway line, adjacent the stone balustrade and along its entire length, appears to have been recognised. Network Rail were planning to electrify the railway line between Bristol and Bath. This work has been postponed. Interim works were discussed with Network Rail. NR have a duty to make the line through Sydney Gardens much safer and are bringing forward proposals to tighten up security and prevent access to the railway. As part of the works, the balustrade along the railway path (west side) will need new iron railings. In a similar manner the upper balustrade (east side) will need similar fencing and the over bridges. This should not be a solution that meets health and safety alone – the approach should be designed to respect the significance and setting of the gardens and this application should show awareness of the impact of the proposals by NR.
This could be better positioned away from the northern boundary to reduce its visual impact.
We seek clarification of the designation status of the toilet if it moved. We are concerned that dismantling and rebuilding in a new position may compromise its listing status and we would wish to see correspondence with HE securing its designation.