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(16 Posts)
Trying2915 Tue 07-Jun-16 15:06:21

Hi, I was just wondering if anyone has any experience of appealing refused listed building consent?
We have bought a place and wanted to change one of the rooms use, into a kitchen, and have just had it refused.
Any experience of this would be hugely appreciated.

Seeline Tue 07-Jun-16 15:11:38

Why was it refused?
Was the Council Conservation Officer against the proposal, or did English Heritage get involved?
The best way with Listed Buildings is to approach the Conservation Officer first and see what would be acceptable and go from there.
You can appeal the decision, but if it is well supported in conservation terms, it is unlikely that the appeal would be allowed.
What grade is the building, and what is the Listing description - does it specifically refer to anything that you would be altering?

Trying2915 Tue 07-Jun-16 15:18:04

Hi Seeline

Thanks for your response. The main house is now split into 3 dwellings. We wanted to change the current library into the kitchen as it is the only room that backs onto the garden and gets any light. The library was created 30 years ago when it was renovated and modernised (ie that wasn't the original library of the manor house), all the panelling was put in 30 years ago and is not original panelling. They said it would ruin the fabric of the building. The building has already been extended and modernised a great deal, which the council approved (as they sold the building to the property developers 30 years ago).

If the panelling was original we wouldn't want to touch it but it isn't, it is creating a 'faux library'.

Trying2915 Tue 07-Jun-16 15:18:48

It is grade 2 listed.

mistlethrush Tue 07-Jun-16 15:21:15

I recently managed to get consent to extend a Grade II Listed cottage with a quite sizeable, modern, single storey extension, with no problem at all (this is what I do as a job, it wasn't my house) - speaking to the conservation officer first is a good idea. However, in this case, proving that the panelling isn't original and making this clear as part of the application would be good - let me know if you want a hand!

Seeline Tue 07-Jun-16 15:21:28

I imaginge it is more the plumbing/electircs/gaswork that will need to be run into the room that will damage the fabric of the building ie its basic structure, rather than 30 year old panelling.
Did the refusal reason give any more information?
Have you sen a copy of the Conservation Officer's response and/or English Heritage?
Have you seen a copy of the Officer's report?
These will all give you much more information.
I think your best bet is to ask for a meeting with the conservation officer, to fins out exactly what the concern is and if there are any ways you can overcome it.

IceMaiden73 Tue 07-Jun-16 15:21:52

How old is the panelling though, as even though it is not original, it is now an integral part of the building

Have you got an architect who specialises in this helping you?

PuraVida Tue 07-Jun-16 15:37:49

the thing is modern additions are part of the story of the house, they may no longer be to our taste, but 50 years ago we were ripping out victorian fireplaces - tastes change, historic buildings legislation exits in part to protect against changes made as a result of current fashion or taste

speak to your conservation officer, there will likely be a compromise. English Heritage (actually now Historic England) won't get involved with a grade II property

mistlethrush Tue 07-Jun-16 15:39:51

But it is amazing what you can do to a Listed Building (particularly if only grade II) if you take the conservation officer along with you - their support is critical in the whole thing. But if you can persuade them that a) you're not damaging the fabric in a way that detracts from the qualities of the building and b) what you're doing respects the character of the building (even if in a different style) and enables it to be used in modern life, they quite often are willing to discuss things. A good conservation architect is very helpful in the process.

RudyMentary Tue 07-Jun-16 15:41:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

clarrrp Tue 07-Jun-16 15:58:38

Most likely this is going to be an electrical and plumbing issue because you will basically have to dig into the walls and floor to move and reinstall a kitchen - it's a considerable amount of work to be done, but it might not be impossible.

Out2pasture Tue 07-Jun-16 16:01:14

My son in law is in the process of a complete refurbishment of a grade 2 listed building in a conservation area. Initially the local (young) conservation officer denied all the changes (including widening a gate entrance by a few inches). He hired someone, their research and subsequent appeal made the renovation possible. I don't know who he hired sadly.

bojorojo Tue 07-Jun-16 16:52:46

The planning department should have a historic buildings officer who may be able to advise. You may have to pay for a visit but it may be worth it before you go any further. It was probably on their advice that the proposal was turned down. What did the planning officer's report say? Why was it refused?

You may be able to get an extension. This depends on a whole host of factors but sometimes they are allowed. Talk to them about alternatives regarding moving the kitchen.

Loads of people do not realise how difficult and expensive it can be to alter a listed building. However, if it was listed before the faux library was installed you could say you are reverting to previous use! If you know what that was. The library was probably not a reason for listing but the alteration to the fabric of the building may be the problem as others have said.

Trying2915 Tue 07-Jun-16 17:13:37

Guys thank you SOO much for all your advice, if anyone knows of a good architect that understands these issues well in the Hertfordshire area I would be so grateful.

They have instructed us to get a historical survey of the room done and send onto them, but added it is unlikely to change their position. We put in a structural report with our application which shows we would only need a 10cm hole on the outside wall to accomodate the kitchen as all the waterworks etc is there as there is a bathroom above, so it is relatively easily to install without causing any harm to the building.

The conservation officer said he would like proof that it isn't original panelling, so I suspect a historical survey will confirm this (rather than a panelling expert?) and that even if the panelling is not original he has grave concerns about the principle behind turning a library into a kitchen and that it will harm the building considerably.

Mistlethrush where are you based? I need someone like you.

I really appreciate all these thoughts.

Seeline Tue 07-Jun-16 19:35:48

If the panelling is only 30 years old, the COuncil should have records of it being put in. Have you looked at the full planning history of the property.? It should all be available at the COuncil offices (some details will be online, but I doubt any details, such as plans, will be on line from that long ago).

tilder Tue 07-Jun-16 19:52:20

Do you have anything on the history of the house? If it's an old manor house, there may be historical documents. Depending on when it was listed, there may be paperwork at the council on the house and changes made.

If it's been divided, do you have the original kitchen? If you do moving it will be tricky. If not, major on the restoration and improvements to the room currently used as a kitchen.

If you have a historical survey, make sure you choose someone with relevant experience. If possible to demonstrate what used to be there. How removing the paneling will improve the building.

Why do they think the kitchen will harm the property?

Some listed building officers focus on maintaining the property as it was at the point of listing. Replacing like for like. Others want original stuff and restoration to that state. Their priority is the house. Not you.

Yy to building the best relationship you can with the officer. It's invaluable.

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