The Society has engaged specialist advisor Alan Baxter Associates (ABA) to comment on the two Leadenhall planning applications. As you can read from their report, the trustees are well justified to object and to require substantial changes to Chapter’s application.
Chapter have recently submitted a planning application for the conversion of Leaden Hall to provide office accommodation for their staff.
This will be the most important planning application to arise in The Close over the last ten years covering a Grade I listed building vacant and decaying for eight years.
The Trustees are engaged in reviewing the considerable quantity of documentation and have retained a number of professional advisors including Alan Baxter Associates to support our response to the application.
Responses are required before the current deadline of the 29th February. You can submit your personal response before the deadline to Wiltshire Planning Portal.
You can access the application by clicking this link
Whilst we are delighted to see that work is being proposed to protect and restore this most significant Grade 1 listed building we believe that a considerable number of elements of the current planning application need to be modified.
Special areas of concern
Flood Risk Assessment
The Planning application includes a desk-based analysis of flood risk assessment, which seems divorced from reality on the ground.
Climate change will only exacerbate this problem.
Proposed Archive building out of Scale and Impact
This drawing shows the South and East elevations of the proposed Archive building. We believe that the building is too large for the site and will seriously impair the streetscape as seen looking west from Marsh Close.
There is a very considerable impact on views from the South in particular those of residents living at and alongside the South Canonry.
This is a site of national and international significance not least because of its connection with John Constable’s paintings.
The SCCPS believes that special weight and attention must be given to the entirety of the landscape and gardens and the setting including the frontage and especially the historic interest and significance of the Constable Views.
We believe that the current proposals would significantly impair the views, character and visual appreciation of the east elevation of Leaden Hall.
Assessment of Significance Section 5
The Society is concerned that the application is not being considered in the overall context of the whole of The Close and most importantly Marsh Close.
Historic England classify the entire conservation area as Grade 1 and Marsh Close as a unique area of semi-rural peace and tranquillity.
“The setting of Leaden Hall in the Salisbury Cathedral Close is of particularly high value in terms of the way the building is experienced and appreciated”.
Need for a comprehensive Master Plan to avoid piecemeal development within the Conservation Area.
Plans for Leaden Hall should be considered in the wider context of the anticipated South Side Development to ensure that efforts are not duplicated, or funds wasted.
We are encouraged that the Cathedral Fabric Commission would appear to support this approach:
“It is important that the development of the Cathedral Close is considered as a whole rather than considering each building individually.