Tesco Stores Ltd, 4-5 Westgate Buildings, Bath
This application concerns the branch of Tesco Express located at 4-5 Westgate Buildings, situated within the Bath conservation area and World Heritage site. Whilst its primary elevation faces onto Westgate Buildings, its secondary façade overlooks the junction between Avon Street and Kingsmead Square, and forms part of the area’s varied commercial streetscape.
The Trust acknowledges the existing use of vinyl signs on this site as a precedent for their retention and replacement. However, with particular regard to the building’s Avon Street elevation, we feel the proposed continued use of window vinyls of this scale and volume would continue to ‘deaden’ the building’s façade and contribution to the commercial streetscape of the conservation area.
We feel that the reduced volume of aluminium pinned lettering would be of benefit to the shopfront’s contribution to the streetscape by decluttering its shopfront and associated visual impact. However, we note that all signage, including window vinyls, regarding opening times would be removed; we would query this decision in light of public amenity, and have some concerns that this could result in applications for further window vinyls in future, particularly along Avon Street in which the windows remain largely open and minimal in design. We would therefore suggest that with regards to the proposed vinyl design, the Avon Street elevation could remain as existing.