The Pig & Fiddle, 2 Saracen Street, City Centre

External alterations to include installation of painted ghost sign to rendered north elevation gable end (Retrospective).
Our Response

The Trust still stands with its previous objection towards this 'ghost' sign. While we welcome efforts to enhance this corner and repair and redecorate the existing historic wall, it is regrettable that an advert of this nature has been applied without listed building consent or specialist conservation advice.

Authentic ghost signs are found in the city – faded and hardly legible and telling a story of past activities. Authenticity is a vital part of the conservation of the World Heritage Site.

The new ‘ghost’ sign is in fact a large new advertisement, as there is no historical proof of a previous ghost sign in place – in fact the profile of the gable of the former building before Saracen Street was cut through is still visible. It is over-large and much more strident than an historic ghost sign. It is unlikely to soften with weathering. The installation of this type of ‘ghost sign’ would not be an authentic ghost sign. Approval could lead to other applications for similar unauthentic ghost signs elsewhere which will individually and collectively compromise the authenticity of the historic environment, as such it neither preserves nor and enhances the character or appearance of the conservation area.

The Trust therefore views the ‘ghost sign’ as detrimental to the visual amenity of the street scene, and detracts from authenticity of the World Heritage Site.

The sign is therefore contrary to Section 12 (Conserving and enhancing the historic environment) of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), Place Making Plan policies B4 (World Heritage Site) and HE1. We would therefore recommend that the application be refused and action taken to remedy the breach of planning control.

Application Number: 19/03455/LBA
Application Date: 01/08/2019
Closing Date: 30/08/2019
Address: The Pig & Fiddle, 2 Saracen Street, City Centre
Our Submission Status: Comment