PLANNING APPLICATIONS RECEIVED BY THE BOURNEMOUTH PLANNING DEPARTMENT DURING APRIL 2023 – A CRITIQUE BY JOHN SOANE, BUILT ENVIRONMENT CONSULTANT TO BOURNEMOUTH CIVIC SOCIETY
14 Nugent Road, Southbourne. Ref. No. 7-2023-14661-A
This is an application to build a two storey side extension and a one storey rear extension to a mid- twentieth century two storey detached house with a two storey bay window to the front with hipped roof above.
The two storey side extension would incorporate the garage and provide extra accommodation above. The single storey extension would considerably increase the living and dining area of the house in the form of a large irregular shaped structure incorporating two new French windows on the new rear elevation and two rectangular skylights in the ceiling.
The Society feels that the resulting very considerable increase in the size of the built foot print in comparison with those of neighbouring properties would alter the general aesthetic context of the existing townscape in this area. As a solution we would suggest that the position of the new rear façade should be made symmetrical in line with the existing rear wall and set back to be halfway between the proposed new office window on one side and the proposed new kitchen window on the other.
Consequently, we have decided that since this application does not fully satisfy the townscape policies of the Bournemouth Local Plan, it should be deferred for further consideration and improvement.
15 Rolls Drive, Hengistbury Head Ref. No. 7-2023-28858
This is an application to remodel an existing detached one/two storey house built in the fashionable modernist style of the 1960’s-70’s with modern windows of differing sizes and a flat roof. The long side elevations would be completed up to two storeys by new extensions and the rear section would be extended by a one storey addition, together with a one storey integrated double garage on the principal façade. There would be a more careful design in the balanced organisation and grouping of modern windows into the reordered front and rear facades.
The Society approves of these well ordered aesthetic changes but ironically, this more integrated structure now stands out in relation to the remaining eclectic modernist designs of its neighbours. Perhaps this will be a pointer towards further remodelling in the near future.
Therefore because this application fulfils all the townscape policy conditions of the Bournemouth Local Plan, we have decided that is should be allowed.
43 Carbery Avenue , Southbourne Ref. No. 7-2023-28852-A
This is an application to remodel the principal facades and to add a considerable one storey extension to the rear façade of an early twentieth century two storey Georgian revival style house. The latter has symmetrical facades with prominent sash windows mainly in pairs to the rear except in the central projection singly on the front façade. It is in all a well integrated design. The reordered front elevation has the front façade remaining symmetrical but the sash windows have been replaced by larger, modern rectangular windows and a distinctive pedimented projection in the centre enclosing the new main entrance with porch and a large vertical window above. The altered rear elevation has a very large seven panelled French window arrangement below and further modern rectangular windows above; there would also be a conspicuous, modern dormer in the roof.
The Society is not especially impressed by the proposed alterations; the new built foot print would be much larger than those of neighbouring properties; the new structure would amount to over development and degrade the general spatial quality of the surrounding townscape. Also we think the modern window sizes cannot be easily integrated into the existing proportions of the house. We do think that a somewhat smaller single storey rear extension might be possible with a more sensitively designed French window structure in place the rather stark design at present offered.
The Society feels strongly that here is yet another attempt to turn a period house into something it was never designed to be. There seems to be an increasing trend to extend the rear sections of well designed inter war houses in Bournemouth and thereby completely degrade the original design of these fine properties. We appeal to the Planning Department to ensure that this tendency by stopped as soon as possible.
And so, since this application does not comply fully with the townscape policies of the Bournemouth Local Plan, the Society has decided that it should be deferred for further consideration and improvement.
21 Spencer Road ( between Southcote and Knyveton Roads ) Ref. No. 7-2023-1409-B
This is an application to create seven rather more spacious flatlets in place of the existing nine bed spaces at present provided in this late nineteenth century dwelling at present used as an HMO. This building is not an exceptional piece of architecture and the new extension, which would take the place of a single storey annexe, would be relatively utilitarian with modern sash windows and a hipped roof
The Society is of the opinion that the provisions for the existing accommodation are already rather overcrowded and the existing site restrictions are too limited to take the proposed extension; moreover the new built footprint would appear much larger than those of properties in the immediate vicinity. If granted we think the general spatial context of this part of Southcote Road would be disturbed.
Under the circumstances, the Society has decided that because this application in no way enhances the townscape policies of the Bournemouth Local Plan, it should be refused.
72 Browning Avenue ( corner of Boscombe Overcliff Drive ) Ref. No. 7-2023-15650-B
This application is for the construction of a four storey block of flats in the modernist style in place of a substantial, well designed house standing in fine gardens, exhibiting double bay windows at the extremities of the front elevation with a hipped roof above. The middle sized block would be typical of the new residential development that in recent years has gradually replaced the original inter –war Arts and Crafts style detached houses. The new built foot print would be considerably larger and extend further into the original garden towards the Boscombe Overcliff Drive. Each storey would be fronted by floor to ceiling glass panels intermittently separated by wall strips or concrete stanchions and surrounded by communal balconies.
The Society feel strongly that what is proposed is in no way an exceptional design and is indeed instantly forgettable in common with a considerable number of other modern flat blocks that have been built along the Boscombe Overcliff in recent years. We greatly deplore this general trend that is only taking place for the sake of financial gain and as such we echo local opinion which feels that such overlarge schemes are out of keeping with the area where there is a more urgent need for family houses.
However if it is now too late to substantially reverse such visual changes that have now been in train for over two decades the Society thinks that the design of the new property should have a more distinct visual emphasis. We think a more balanced ratio between wall and window should be made, the extremities of the block should be better emphasised and a gentle hipped roof should crown the building.
Under these circumstances the Society is of the opinion that since this application does not fulfil the conditions of the townscape policies of the Bournemouth Local Plan, it should be deferred for further discussion and improvement.
240-242 Kinson Road, Kinson Ref. No. 7-2023-28857-A
This is an application to construct four narrow, two storey houses on a combined severed site, two behind 242 Kinson Road and two behind 240 Kinson Road. Each house would take the form of an elongated rectangle with French windows and modern windows in sections and a pitched roof above.
The Society notes that here is yet another example of an attempt to cram four very small properties on to a very restricted space which is already part of a pre war developed, urban site. Local opinion also worries over problems of increased traffic. We very much hope that the Planning Department will continue to act strongly against these developments promoted merely for financial gain, of the existing planning system.
Consequently since this application in no way enhances the townscape policies of the Bournemouth Local Plan, the Society has no hesitation in deciding that it should be refused.
21-29 Spring Road Ref. No. 7-2023-5777-Q
This is an application to build two pairs of semi-detached houses on the site of disused industrial premises. Each block would be designed in the form of nineteenth century artisan cottages with symmetrically positioned modern sash windows on both facades, double entrances at the front and a pitched roof above.
Although the Society fully accepts that the residential development of this industrial site would be a considerable visual improvement of the area, we feel that the new combined built foot print is simply too large for the restricted site and the dimensions of each house are also rather too small. It is quite obvious to us that the exceptional size of the existing industrial buildings is being used as a president, merely for financial gain, to allow overdevelopment of the same site. The Society therefore suggests that a good solution would be a single block of three semi-detached houses of more generous dimensions – so allowing more private space for each house and better parking facilities.
Therefore because this application falls short of the townscape policies of the Bournemouth Local Plan, we think it should be deferred for further discussion and improvement.
38a-40 Southbourne Grove, Southbourne Ref. No. 7-2023-4882-H
This is an application to construct a three storey, four bedroom dwelling on a severed site to the rear of an existing late nineteenth century retail property – part of Southbourne Grove. Access would be from New Park Road at the rear. The built foot print of the proposed structure would be generally compatible with those of neighbouring properties which have also been built on severed site in the vicinity. The new structure would be designed in the form of a late nineteenth century seaside mansion block; of two storeys with a gabled projection on the principal façade, symmetrically positioned, modern sash windows and a complex hipped roof.
Although the built foot print of what is proposed is somewhat large for the new site, in view of the fact that properties generally of similar size already exist on many severed sites either side, the Society feels that new residential development on this location cannot be refused. However we do think that the somewhat over large appearance of the building could be mitigated by a slight reduction of the existing dimensions.
Therefore since this application appears to fulfil the conditions of the townscape policies of the Bournemouth Local Plan, the Society has decided that it should be deferred for further improvement.
62 Sunnyhill Road, Southbourne Ref. No. 7-2023-1372-A
This is an application to construct a two storey extension to the existing rear elevation of an early twentieth century house in order to create sufficient extra space to convert the existing property into two separate residential units. The new rear elevation surmounted by a subsidiary hipped roof would have symmetrical fenestration in the form of two, three part modern windows above and two pairs of double French windows below.
The Society thinks that the new built footprint clearly would be larger than those of adjacent properties and in believing that such a development would amount to over development we agree with local opinion that such alterations would not be in keeping with the general character of the area. Indeed there was a fear that this application would set a bad precedent for the decline of the family orientation of the area for the sake of financial gain.
Under these circumstances, because this application does not contribute towards satisfying the townscape policies of the Bournemouth Local Plan, the Society has decided it should be refused.
Sandringham House (corner of Exeter Road and Exeter Park Road ) Ref. No. 7-2023-1087-V
This is an application to add an extra floor to an existing composite structure of three shops with flats on three stories above that was built in conventional modernist style during the 1960’s/70’s. The new storey would be twice the height of the existing floor heights. Also the broken ornamental divisions between the existing windows would be made continuous up to the roof line which would be topped by concave edging throughout and all the windows on the narrower southern section of Sandringham House would be replaced much larger window dimensions.
The Society accepts that under the particular commercial context of this part of Exeter Road, the building on this site has no architectural pretension. We think that the planned alterations are likely to marginally improve the appearance of this site. Consequently the Society thinks that the application should be allowed.