Proposal to protect iconic Bath views wins council group backing
Calls have been made for some of Bath's iconic and historic views to be protected in the same way that listed buildings are.
Former heritage minister John Penrose, who is the MP for Weston-super-Mare, made the proposal in an article in The Daily Telegraph and has received the backing of Bath and North East Somerset Council's Conservative group.
Mr Penrose believes English Heritage, the Government and Unesco should introduce special protection for England's best urban views, such as the Royal Crescent, as part of a new, streamlined system of architectural conservation.
He said: "I'm absolutely delighted that people up and down the country have expressed an interest in my proposals.
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"Bath, in particular, is blessed with many beautiful buildings and streetscapes, so I'm pleased that its local Conservative councillors agree with the idea and are ready to lobby the Government about it.
"I hope we can build up the kind of momentum that's needed to put the issue firmly on the political agenda."
The idea would be to simplify the current system, where issues such as a site's status as a World Heritage Site or conservation area are taken into account when making planning decisions.
Under the proposed listing system, particular views and streetscapes would instead be given special protection, making the system more straightforward for developers while ensuring that iconic views are preserved for future generations.
Councillor Geoff Ward (Con, Bathavon North), said "We think the idea of creating a listed status for iconic views is an excellent one.
"Clearly in an area like B&NES there are many cherished views which could benefit from such a protection."