Planning and Development Archive

Fate of the Richmond Arms (12 September 2018)
There is a meeting tonight Wed 12 September at 8pm to discuss the future of the pub, if any members would like to attend.

Beckford’s Wall, mended, 20.7.17

Beckford’s Wall, mended, 20.7.17

Save The Richmond Arms, 27 March 2018
Deadline for comments is 5th April.
Click here for relevant B&NES planning page.

Beckford's Embattled Gateway/Land Behind Dixon Gardens (21 August 2017)
Please see updates on this below, most recent first.

Update 21st August 2017: three Bath Preservation Trust Listing Applications to Historic England, and a request to Dixon Gardens residents
This is to let you know that today the Trust has submitted three detailed applications to Historic England, these are:
1. Application to amend the list entry for the north and east walls and terraces to include the west and south walls (i.e. the whole horseshoe around Dixon Gardens).
2. Application to amend the designation of the Gate to Grade II* to highlight the special architectural, historic and artistic significance of the Gate.
3. Application for the Nursery Garden Terraces with the Gate, as a distinct and legible urban garden (and a survival of the larger designed landscape) to be included in the Register of Historic Parks & Gardens.
I will keep you posted with any developments (the applications have been submitted under the longer, free service so might take some time). It would be useful to know, should we be asked, whether any home owners in Dixon Gardens would be willing to provide access to their back gardens should the HE representative wish to view the revetments, walls and vaults.
Sacha Hunter
Architecture & Planning Assistant
Bath Preservation Trust
01225 338727 |
Robin Kerr (Chairman) | Email

Update 14th August 2017, Enforcement Notice satisfied
Following a site visit on the 9th of August 2017 to Land Rear Of Dixon Gardens it is apparent that work has now been completed in order to fulfil the terms of the enforcement notice.
At the time of the visit it was noted that a wooden gate had not been installed. I have been informed the intention is to manufacture a new door as the old one was in such a poor state however as this element did not form part of the notice the case can now be closed.
Robert Warren
Planning Enforcement Officer
Planning Services
Bath & North East Somerset Council

Update 14th July 2017
Work is now complete - see photograph

Update 7th July 2017
The Council's deadline for rebuild of the wall having expired on 20 June, the owner directed her builder, and he started work on 7 July, using some stone contributed by the Association. This work is being closely supervised by Council Enforcement Officers.

Update 3 April 2017
"In light of the recent court decision the terms of the enforcement notice are upheld and Ms Barton has 3 months from the date of the court decision to reinstate the wall, this would be the 20th June.
Ms Barton did not seek permission to appeal from the judge, but does still have until 10 April 2017 to do so.
I will be writing to her this week to remind her of the requirements and requesting we are informed when works commence so as we can make an inspection.
Kind regards
Robert Warren, Planning Enforcement Officer, Planning Services, Bath & North East Somerset Council"
Meanwhile the Association has offered Ms Barton some Bath stone at no cost, to help with the rebuilding work.

Beckford's Embattled Gateway/Land Behind Dixon Gardens: Appeal to High Court: Dismissed, 20 March 2017
LCA member George Scott attended the Cardiff Justice Centre on 20 March to witness the handing down of judgement and to hear the decision on the case.
George has advised that Ms Barton's appeal on a point of law has been DISMISSED.
Judge Jarman said that the reasons for his decision will be emailed to the parties involved. Further information will be posted here when available.
In a letter to LCA Chairman, Robin Kerr, George Scott has stated:
"The detail behind the judgement will be of considerable interest and there is little doubt that the combined force of the LCA has successfully fought off a very dangerous precedent being established in Bath and indeed elsewhere."
George and Robin both presume that this will lead to re-imposition of the Enforcement Order on Ms. Barton (to rebuild the wall).
Details of the decision may be found here.

Beckford's Embattled Gateway/Land Behind Dixon Gardens: Appeal to High Court, 11 October 2016
On 11 October the Council announced that the owner of the wall (Ms K Barton) had submitted an Appeal to the High Court against the Secretary of State's rejection of her earlier Appeal. Because of this, the enforcement order requiring her to reinstate the wall by 2 December 2016 is deferred.

Beckford's Embattled Gateway/Land Behind Dixon Gardens: Appeal refused
Thank you to all who contributed to this very satisfactory outcome. The appellant has 3 months from the date of the appeal decision to undertake works to reinstate the wall.

Beckford's Embattled Gateway/Land Behind Dixon Gardens: Appeal by owners: objections required by end Tuesday 28 June 2016
The owner of the partially demolished wall in Upper Lansdown Mews was served with an Enforcement Notice (to rebuild it) on 4th May 2016, against which she appealed on 17th May (see below for details).

South wall to Beckford’s garden, 28.8.15

South wall to Beckford’s garden, 28.8.15

Wooden Stairs, 3 Lansdown Place West - update, 25 June 2016
As below, the owners of 3 Lansdown Place West submitted a new planning application (16/02027/LBA) in April 2016. The Association commented as follows: "The Lansdown Crescent Association supports this proposal, which will, inter alia, rectify the earlier inappropriate wooden baluster to the basement to which the Association objected earlier."
This planning application has now been approved by the Council.

Wooden Stairs, 3 Lansdown Place West - Further Planning Application, 7 June 2016
3 Lansdown Place West has submitted a new planning application which includes modifications to the external oak staircase. The proposal is for the bulky oak handrail to be replaced with more sympathetic black iron balusters and handrail to the lower courtyard; including modification of existing external staircase to basement, provision of new lower ground floor external door, replacement of modern glazed roof light above stairwell, and reinstatement of multi-paned windows to ground and first floors. Application reference: 16/02027/LBA.
The Bath Preservation Trust have supported the application with the following comment: "The Trust welcomes this application to reinstate traditional multi paned timber sash windows to the first and second floor of this listed building as this will integrate and harmonise the overall composition of the front elevation given the fact that the third floor windows are multi paned and that the overall street scene is predominantly multi paned."
The Association has also supported this proposal (deadline for comments was 8th June).

16/01310/FUL: Bath Christmas Market period extension to 25 days, for 3 years from 2016, 18 March 2016
Click here
The LCA has objected to this proposal (comment dated 24 April)."

Wooden Stairs, 3 Lansdown Place West - Retrospective Planning Application, 1 June 2015
The Association has submitted an Objection to this retrospective Application, on the grounds that its design does not meet the accepted norm and therefore sets an unwelcome precedent for this street of listed buildings. The text can be found at

Wooden Stairs, 3 Lansdown Place West - Retrospective Planning Application, 28 May 2015
Our last post about this subject was on 8th Feb. Since then, the owners have submitted a retrospective planning application, 15/01813/LBA. The deadline for commenting on this is 5th June. The LCA Committee is considering its position, and, if it decides to object, will advise the membership by email to do likewise, because, to mis-quote Stalin: "Quantity has a Quality all its own".

Right of Way across Green in front of Somerset Place, 25 February 2015
B&NES Council confirmed on 17th Feb 2015 the City of Bath Definitive Map Modification Order 2014 adding to the city map the public footpath running from the stairs at the west end of the Somerset Place green to the north-east corner of the green. It appears that this Map Modification will become final, if nobody applies to the High Court within the six-week period allowed, that is by 31st March 2015, to question the validity of the Order.

Wooden Stairs, 3 Lansdown Place West - Update, 8 February 2015
The Council's Enforcement Officers reported on 15 January 2015 that the wooden stairs constitute a breach in planning control, and are being investigated.

Land Above Dixon Gardens: Planning Application 14/04025/FUL - Decision, 19 November 2014
Members will wish to know that this application has been withdrawn. Many thanks to all those who objected! In her statement, the Case Officer drew particular attention to the number of objections received and to the historical nature of the site, which would be compromised by the building proposed. However, it is always possible that a revised application will be submitted, so eternal vigilance is needed.

Wooden Stairs, 3 Lansdown Place West, 4 November 2014
Members may have noticed new, unpainted, wooden stairs recently erected in the basement of 3 Lansdown Place West. It is understood that the Planning Department has been contacted about them and that they are investigating their suitability for a Listed building.

Right of Way across Somerset Place Green: Decision, November 2014
Click here

Land Rear Of Dixon Gardens - LCA Planning Objection, 16 October 2014
Please click here for details of the Association's planning objection; members and other local residents are also encouraged to comment personally on the plan (the relevant B&NES website link is below).

Land Rear Of Dixon Gardens, Upper Lansdown Mews, Erection of a four bed dwelling - Ref: 14/04025/FUL, October 2014
Application has been made for a four bedroom, flat roofed house to be built on the lawn to the rear of Dixon Gardens and to the west of Beckford's Embattled Gateway (which is listed). The proposal seeks to create access from Upper Lansdown Mews by enlarging the door in the wall between The Coach House and the west side of Dixon Gardens, and creating a lane along Beckford's Walk (which Beckford used to reach the lawn from his house at 20 Lansdown Crescent, prior to mounting his horse!) This application is currently being examined by the Association, in conversation with the Bath Preservation Trust, and further advice will be published. Those who wish to comment on it should visit B&NES' Planning website at and insert Ref. 14/04025/FUL. Deadline for comment is 20th October.

Right of Way across Somerset Place Green, August 2014
The LCA has been contacted by Bath and North East Somerset Council's Public Rights of Way team regarding an application to establish a public footpath from the existing public footpath stairs BC46/4 across Somerset Place Green to the junction of Somerset Place and Somerset Lane.
Previous 'user evidence' shows use dating back to the 1950s which would be sufficient to show that the alleged public route has been used for more than 20 years 'as of right', i.e., without force, without secrecy and without permission.
Delia Jay, LCA secretary, has been supplied with User Evidence forms, to be used if any LCA member wishes to submit further evidence of at least 20 years' use of the Green-crossing footpath in question. Delia also has maps and drawings etc. showing what is involved.
Evidence about use of the Green-crossing path should be submitted by 5th September 2014. If you would like a form, and/or to see the plans supplied by the council, or more information on the subject, please email Delia. Alternatively, you may contact the council officer, Graeme Stark, Senior Officer: Public Rights of Way, Bath and North East Somerset Council, tel. 01225 477650, or visit their website:

St James' Dispensary - Threat to Local Pharmacies Lifted, August 2014
At the Council's Development Control Committee on 30th July it was decided by elected members to refuse permission for the St James' GP Practice to add a dispensary to their premises in Northampton Buildings (14/00958/VAR), despite a recommendation from Officers to permit it. The reasons were the very large number of objections received, compared to supportive letters, and the likely effect which this would have had on both local chemist's shops and on the small shopping centre in St James' Square.
Robin Kerr (Chairman) | Email

St James' Dispensary - Threat to Local Pharmacies, Update 18 June 2014
The Chairman posted a piece on 19th April about the threat to local pharmacies posed by the planning application to create a dispensary at the St James' surgery in Northampton Buildings (14/00958/VAR). Since then, another 15 objections have been posted on the Council's Planning website, including one from the Association, in response to a statement by the applicant about how he would propose to run the dispensary. This would threaten not only our local pharmacy (Hawes Whiston in St James' Square) but also the one in Brock Street. Further objections will be accepted until 25th June.

Conservatory refused for 6 Lansdown Crescent, May 2014
A conservatory was proposed in March for the yard behind 6 Lansdown Crescent, to which the Association objected, having been alerted by the owners of the basement flat, who were LCA members. Several other members objected individually. Permission has now been refused by the Council, because it judged that this would (a) unacceptably loom over the basement and (b) undermine the character of this Grade 1 listed building.

St James' Dispensary - Threat to Local Pharmacies, Update 19 April 2014
Robin Kerr, Association Chairman, wrote to all members on 7 April about the threat to local pharmacies posed by the planning application to create a dispensary at the St James' surgery in Northampton Buildings - and particularly to Hawes Whiston in St James' Square. He is delighted to be able to state that no fewer than 148 objections have been registered against it, and only one in favour, so thanks to all those who wrote! Further, an excellent email about this was written by Cllr Andy Furse to the Planning Case officer, which he and Anthony Pearson (our Planning Adviser) consider to be textbook treatment from the local councillor - well researched, well written, no repetition, sensitive to local feeling, and covering all the points.
Robin Kerr (Chairman) | Email

Somerset Place Development
Association members hold periodic meetings with Stephen Green of Future Heritage, developers of Somerset Place, on progress with the plans for the buildings to the rear of the site, and traffic arrangements in Somerset Lane.