The Battersea Society: Planning Committee submission The Battersea Society website 

Planning Committee Submission

Submission to Wandsworth Borough Council
Added on: 23 August 2018 at 17:19:30

37-39 St Johns Road SW11 1QN (2018/3669)

The Battersea Society has considered this application carefully, and we are grateful in particular for your detailed pre-application comments following your meeting with the developers, as recorded in the planning statement.  Despite this, our reservations about the detail of the application lead to our objecting to this application as it now stands. 

We broadly accept the case made by the developers for the demolition of the existing building, which does detract rather than contributing to the character of the conservation area; and like you, we are content with the change of use of the upper floors to residential use, in line with policy H1 of the London Plan. 

On such a prominent site, it is critically-important,  of course, that the replacement building should be of high quality, well integrated into surrounding development, and contribute positively to the streetscape and townscape in both St John’s Road and Beauchamp Road. It must relate positively to the neighbouring properties in both roads, and sit well within the rising land to the rear and along Beauchamp Road.  

We are pleased that the original proposal for five-storeys has been reduced to four, which we believe is justified in this location, and responds positively to the buildings on the corner of Eckstein Road. We are also pleased that the building is to be faced in brick. We have reservations, however, about the proposed use of pale buff bricks on the main frontage, and white/grey bricks on a substantial part of the Beauchamp Road frontage: neither colour seems to relate to existing buildings in the townscape (and we note that on the final page of the DAS there is reference to the use of London stocks on the main part of the Beauchamp Road frontage, which would be much preferable). 

We also have reservations about the height of the proposed windows on the main frontage, for which there is no precedent in the street. It is also a pity that the architects have not followed the advice that Crittall windows would not be appropriate: we see no good reason to retain the use of such windows (used in the main in industrial buildings) in a new building in this setting. 

We also have reservations about the proposed use of glass plank cladding for the top floor, which would not be in keeping with materials used elsewhere in the conservation area. 

Finally, we are not clear from the plans how the building will relate to the relatively new flats that extend from Ilminster Gardens around the corner into Beauchamp Road; or exactly how the access from Beauchamp Road to the rear of the terrace of shops on St John’s Road will be retained. 

We trust that these issues can be addressed by the developer and that a revised proposal addressing these concerns could be prepared which would contribute positively to the town centre and to the conservation area.

To see full details of this application and other comments, or to make your own views known please click here