Western Riverside Development Area, Midland Road, Westmoreland, Bath
BPT objects to these hoarding signs on the basis that they are excessive in amount and placement. Whilst we accept that the applicant needs to advertise their properties, the placement of in effect large hoardings along a long section of riverside tow path detracts from its character and appearance and creates a dominant blanking visual effect. It is not clear which way the signs will face or whether they are two sided but in either case the effect is the same. In particular the signage by Victoria Bridge is also excessive in amount, it is insensitive to the special architectural and historic interest of the listed bridge and neither preserves nor enhances its setting. We note in the covering letter that this is described incorrectly as the Destructor Bridge – it is clear from the images supplied that signage is not proposed to be placed near the Destructor Bridge. If these signs were temporary in nature, we would be less concerned, but given permission is being sought for a 5 year period, we are objecting on the basis that the signage, due its amount and size, and therefore its cumulative effect, impacts harmfully on the character and appearance of the local area, and the visual amenity of the towpath and the quality of its riverside ambience. It represents a disproportionately large ‘take over’ of the public realm by fairly aggressive advertising. We would recommend the signage placement and amount is reconsidered.
The proposed scheme would neither preserve nor enhance the special interest of the listed bridge and would fail to maintain or enhance the character of the conservation area. It would therefore detract from the special qualities of the WHS. The scheme would be contrary to the Planning (Listed Building and Conservation Areas) Act 1990, Section 16 (Conserving and Enhancing the Historic Environment) of the NPPF, policies B1, B4, and CP6 of the B&NES Core Strategy and policies CP6, D1, D2, D9, HE1, BD1, B.4, of the Placemaking Plan. We would therefore recommend the application be amended or refused.