Skip to content

Preserving the streetscape

The Joint Planning Forum of the Regency Society and Hove Civic Society has objected to the following application.

BH2023/00690: 25 Preston Park Avenue, Brighton BN1 6HL. Variation of condition 2 of BH2020/02934 to allow amendments to cycle store and replacement of green roof with solar panels.

25 Preston Park Avenue is a surviving Victorian villa within the Preston Park Conservation Area facing onto the Grade II listed park and garden of Preston Park. Part of the character of the conservation area on this street is the large front gardens that  slope up to the houses on  a raised level facing down to the park, which contributes to the green space of the park.

BH2020/02934 allowed on appeal the conversion of No 25 into seven flats and the construction of two new houses in the back garden, the subject of the appeal and of the application to change the roof.

Permission was given to replace a single garage in the left-hand half of the frontage by a two-car hard-standing. The current retrospective application is to create two similar parking bays on the right hand side.

The proposed alterations will result in more of the front garden being used for storage of bikes, bins and car parking and a reduction of the size of the front garden area. It also will result in the bin and cycle and bin storage being closer to the front boundary of the property and therefore more conspicuous in the conservation area. The additional two parking bays will result in loss of green landscaping, as well as a significant loss of planting that contributes to the character of this street and its front gardens. The previous proposal as approved by the inspector included three trees: a cherry tree and two silver birches. These would be removed to make way for two additional parking bays. There would also be a loss of the front boundary wall onto the garden, which is a feature of historic properties on this street.

The already approved landscape should maintained, or if additional storage space is required it should be to the rear of the building, where it is less visible from the public view in the conservation area. This proposal moves cycle storage from the rear to the front of the property. For this reason, the proposal would be harmful to the conservation area as a public asset with no public benefits.

Image: 25 Preston Park Avenue, built by George Burstow in 1899, before alteration [Source: Google]