The Norwich Society

Future Norwich Planning Applications

View planning application comments made by The Norwich Society's Planning Appraisal Committee in 2019

The Planning Appraisal Committee (PAC) only applications which are within the Norwich City Council area. It will only consider an application which lies outside the Council’s jurisdiction if it is a major scheme which will have an impact on the City itself.

Every planning application in the City is posted on Norwich City Council’s website where members of the public can view and comment on them.

The PAC Chairman looks at every application – around 100 per month - and shortlists those which fall within the PAC’s terms of reference. These terms of reference focus on their impact on the heritage, built form and public environment of their surroundings. We therefore do not consider applications such as rear extensions, changes of use (which do not significantly change the building’s appearance), and permitted development (where consent is automatic).

We look at most larger applications, such as individual or groups of new dwellings, commercial and retail schemes. We especially consider applications which involve demolition or significant alterations, and those which affect listed buildings. Proposals within Conservation Areas will also be scrutinised more closely.

However size is not always a consideration in what we review. We are concerned for example about small front extensions which may affect the architectural consistency of a row of terraces, or changes of materials in front elevations - we will usually object to replacing timber windows with uPVC. We also look at shop signage which by its size or design detracts from the façade on which it is placed.

We welcome pre-planning presentations from developers or consultants for larger schemes. The Committee has professional expertise, including architects, planners, and a former Planning Inspector, and we are always pleased to provide pro-active advice.

It is important to emphasise that we are not just trying to preserve what is existing for its own sake. Of course we will fight to protect important architectural heritage and the built environment, but we are equally supportive of new development if it is of good architectural quality and appropriate for its setting and context. It is for this reason that we host the biennial Norwich Society Design Awards to showcase the best examples of modern design in the City.

Of the 20 or 30 schemes per month which fall into the above remit, about half have a potential impact and are selected for review at our monthly committee meeting. Where we feel there are issues of concern, we will submit comments to the planning department for consideration as part of the decision process. Conversely we will voice our support for an application if we feel it makes a positive contribution and is a design of high architectural quality.

Find out here how to view and comment on a planning application.

Planning Appraisal Committee Comments June 2019

19/00463/F – Prince of Denmark, 140 Sprowston Road

Change of use from Public House (Class A4) to 5 no self contained flats (Class C3) and construction of 2 No dwellings.

The conversion of the PH looks satisfactory and the flats are generously accommodated. The two new dwellings are quite basic in design and would be improved if they could reflect some of the design and detailing from the PH itself. However, the most important concern of the Norwich society is the protection and conservation of the Moray smith Prince of Denmark mural, of which there is no mention, not even in the Design & Access statement.

The planning consent must include a condition for the proper maintenance of the artwork in perpetuity. For better protection, we would recommend that the Council should propose for it to be listed.

19/00679/F – Pump House, east of 85 Hall Road

We support this application – a simple, pleasing conversion of a redundant building.


19/00291/F – Fieldgate, Town Close Road

Two storey front, side and rear extension, roof alteration and double garage

We strongly object to these proposals as they result in a massive building, totally out of character with the neighbouring Town Close estate houses. The 3 gables are out of scale and over-bearing. We know that CAM Architects can produce a scheme much more in keeping as we have liked and supported many of their previous schemes.

(We understand that this application has been recommended for approval. However, a letter has been received from a resident objecting and has a heritage statement. SJ agreed to attend the City Council Planning Committee on 11th July when this is due to be discussed.)

19/00717/F – Land rear of 32 & 33 Cattle Market Street

We have previously objected to the development of this awkward site. It has no opportunity for any amenity space, views out and servicing provision. It will also have a negative impact on occupants of adjacent residential buildings.

19/00621/F – 83 Aylsham Road

Erection of 2 No residential units in garden land of 83 Aylsham Road including alterations to existing property.

Members have been asked to comment on this application. The letter received from Mr Luke Oxford, which had been circulated, objecting and citing a restricted covenant as it is part of the Waterloo Park Estate was discussed.

Those members present mainly supported this objection but JB will await further comments from the rest of the committee members.

Planning Appraisal Committee Comments May 2019

19/00440/MA – St. Anne’s Wharf, Norwich

We feel that the elevations to King Street are of lower quality than the approved application (which was barely acceptable in the first place), and will harm the character of this important character area of the city centre conservation area. We feel that the very abrupt termination of the parapets and relatively featureless brick walls forms an uncomfortable juxtaposition with the historic buildings on this street, as well as, indeed, the more sympathetically designed new-build properties on the other side of the road. We therefore object to this application on the grounds of policy DM3, and suggest that the architect seeks an alternative treatment to this elevation which is more in keeping with the surrounding conservation area.

The designs and details should pay more respect to the many historic buildings remaining in the street, particularly Howard House, Dragon Hall and the recently built dwellings opposite which seek to replicate the former yards and courts in a modern manner.

19/00376/L & 19/00373/F - The Great Hospital proposals

We strongly support The Great Hospital proposals, both for the brief's objectives and for the quality of the design response, which has been superbly and sensitively drawn up by Cowper Griffiths. We also note the excellent landscaping scheme for the new scheme drawn up by landscape architect Tessa Hobbs, who prepared and implemented a wonderful plan for the Holme Terrace development. The grounds look superb now and her proposals for the large new project are equally exciting.

We were particularly impressed by the Design and Access Statement which, unusually, acknowledged the merits of the Council's pre-app comments and clearly set out the changes made as a consequence.

Planning Appraisal Committee Comments March 2019

19/00134/F - 5 Marston Lane, Norwich NR4 6LZ

Demolition of double garage, sub-division of site and construction of 1 No. two storey house. Construction of vehicular access and double garage

The Committee likes the contemporary approach to the design, and the replacement of the existing double garage is an improvement, being more in-keeping with the neighbouring buildings. The plan works well; having the open-plan living and kitchen area on the upper floor will give an attractive outlook. We are fully supportive of the proposals.

19/00271/F - 1 Holmwood Rise, Norwich NR7 0HJ

Construction of 1 No. dwelling and associated works

The floor plans and elevations are overly complicated, with too many different materials, and no coherence about the elevations. The building is too tall both in proportion to the plot and in relation to the streetscape. We object to this design, but it has potential to work better if it is simplified and scaled down, probably by removing a storey and the dormers, and rationalising the window openings.

19/00257/F - Site of 2 Esdelle Street

Demolition of existing warehouse and construction of dwelling house with attached studio/office

This is an excellent high quality scheme and we fully support this application to clear the present eyesore. The plans have been beautifully drawn, with great attention to detail, and will be instrumental in lifting this depressed area

Planning Appraisal Committee Comments February 2019

18/01839 – Land at rear of 32 and 33 Cattle Market Street

Construction of three storey house with basement

This is a very poor application and harms the living standards and impacts the amenities of the adjoining properties.

19/00088/F – Norwich Family Life Church, Heartsease Lane

Construction of new church auditorium with associated children and youth facilities, nursery and car parking with external works and new pedestrian access.

We fully support this application.

19/00135/F – Conifers, 9 Upton Close

Two storey side, front and rear extension. Changes to fenestration. Changes to roof form. Changes to boundary wall and driveway arrangements.

We object to this application. Although there has been an attempt to address the concerns about the earlier proposals, it remains a very large property and its style and materials do not sit well in this context.

19/00160/F – 2 Violet Road

Erection of one bedroom dwelling and associated works.

This is a well-conceived and attractive design by Cam Architects for this small house. It is an innovative use of a very constrained site which has been carefully designed to avoid overlooking. We support this application.

Planning Appraisal Committee Comments January 2019

18/01714/F - Land adjacent to Clarence Harbour Court, Carrow Road

Two new dwellings

Well-designed houses on a tight site. Well thought out with the drawings explaining the scheme very well so it is easy to see what is proposed and how it would look on the existing site, (Something that is not always shown in applications.

19/00135/F - Conifers 9 Upton Close Norwich NR4 7DP

Two storey side, front and rear extensions. Changes to fenestration. Changes to roof form. Changes to boundary wall and driveway arrangements.

We object to this application. Although there has been an attempt to address the concerns about the earlier proposals, it remains a very large property and its style and materials do not sit well in this context.

19/00160/F - 2 Violet Road Norwich NR3 4TR

Erection of a one bedroom dwelling and associated works.

This is a well conceived & attractive design by CAM Architects for this small house. It is an innovative use of a very constrained site, which has been carefully designed to avoid overlooking. We support this application.

19/00165/F - Car Park And Premises Between 25 And 27 St Leonards Road Norwich NR1 4BT

Erection of 4 No. dwellings.

We like the imaginative Feilden & Mawson plans and the skilful way in which they propose to develop the site. It brings a brownfield site back into use and the terrace form is in keeping with the rest of the street. We therefore would support this application for approval.