Jim Gowan’s West Hill Watch . . .


A planning application for this property has been considered by the Conservation Advisory Group which recommended approval. The two storey house on the corner of Guildford Road and Clifton Street was a dog grooming parlour for many years and had, before that, been a shop. The proposal will replace the shop window with bay windows in order to make the premises more suitable for residential occupation.


The Conservation Advisory Group, however, recommended refusal for this application to demolish the existing dwelling and erect a three storey building with 2no two bedroom flats and 1no one bedroom flat, considering the design to be inappropriate for the area. There were also concerns about the lack of clarity in the drawings submitted as these did not make clear the parking provision. This is the second application for this site in recent years. The previous application for a single four bedroomed house with a garage has not been implemented. It had been refused by the Council but then allowed on appeal by a planning inspector. In front of the adjacent property (19A Bath Street) it is interesting to note the two (redundant) petrol pumps which are on the local list of heritage assets. These “Shellmex” pumps from the early 1950s are a reminder of what was one of the first, if not the first, petrol station in Brighton. It seems they remained in use into the 21st century which explains why they carry stickers, added in the latter part of the 20th century, indicating “three star” and “four star” petrol. With the introduction of unleaded petrol such terms are themselves of historical interest, being no longer a feature of our modern fuel pumps.


A further application to replace the existing pitched roof with a mansard roof incorporating a single dormer both front and rear has been submitted. The current proposal is to raise the roof line slightly less than proposed in the previous application, which the council refused, and not to raise the height of the front parapet. The current application points out that there are many examples of buildings within Brighton and Hove of a similar size, period and style, which have traditional mansard roofs and that there are also examples of the council’s granting permission for similar mansard alterations to unlisted buildings in other conservation areas.

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