Adams + Collingwood win Planning Appeal for Scottish Widows in Tunbridge Wells

  • Tunbridge Wells house

Adams + Collingwood win Planning Appeal for Scottish Widows in Tunbridge Wells

August 2013

Inspector commends A+C design.

Planning Inspector Mr Mark Dakeyne MRTPI  commended the design by Adams + Collingwood for two new houses on a sensitive site in Mount Ephraim Tunbridge Wells, following a 2 day Public Inquiry on 16th / 17th July 2013,
The appeal, by A+C’s client  Scottish Widows, against refusal of consent for the development of 2 houses by Tunbridge Wells Borough Council was upheld.
The Inspector described Adams and Collingwood’s proposal as “elegant” , “well considered” and “appropriate” in his Appeal Decision, which included the following appreciation of the design:
“This is a well considered response in that the building would be elegant but restrained and not compete with the ostentation of Bredbury. Moreover, the detailing and materials would be appropriate. In these respects the design would make a positive contribution to local character and distinctiveness.”
 
The appeal concluded over two years efforts by TWBC to block  development of the site. Initially they had advised that a contemporary scheme would be welcome, but then reversed their position. When an alternative scheme was tabled they advised that the principle of any development of the site was unacceptable. The present scheme was then designed in close consultation with Scottish Widows’ Planning Consultant Mr William Hall, of Broadlands Planning, their historic buildings advisor Mr David Atwell, and their Counsel Mr Christopher Boyle QC of Landmark chambers. The scheme was refused by TWBC on grounds that it would be ‘a discordant feature in the street scene’  and that it ‘would have an adverse impact on the character and setting of the Conservation area’.  The Inspector dismissed these criticisms of A+C’s design.
Adams + Collingwood’s work at Summerhill House in Tunbridge Wells has been recognised by the Royal Tunbridge Wells Civic Society with an Award in 2012 for the restoration of the 18th century former lodging house.