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Any development must conserve or enhance the character of a Conservation Area

  • by JW

Torquay is under immense pressure from developers – with campaign groups taking the fight to Judicial Review…


In March this year, a campaign to save the Pavilion and park proved successful – largely on the grounds that “It disregards local and national policies for the Conservation Area.”

Help Save Cary Green, Torquay Pavilion and Harbour Conservation Area

Save Cary Green

Controversial plan for a hotel and flats at Torquay’s historic Pavilion has been refused


And now there is the fight to prevent development in another Conservation Area:


Elegant or an alien concrete box? Planners decide on flats in Torbay

At a meeting on Monday evening, Pat Bishop, chair of the St Marychurch Community Partnership, objected to the amended design for a three-storey block as “alien” and a “concrete box”. She said it would have a negative impact and set a precedent which would “degrade” the quality of the conservation area. Mrs Bishop said: “This is just a concrete box and adds nothing to the conservation area.”

Elegant or an alien concrete box? Planners decide on flats in Torbay


A fortnight ago, a Judicial Review was launched:


Judicial Review initiated on the decision process for 213 St Marychurch Road block of flats.

Our legal Council’s view is that the decision to grant planning permission was unlawful for the following reasons:

  1. The Defendant failed to have adequate regard to, and failed to apply, the duties under s. 72 of the Planning (Listed Building and Conservation Area) Act 1990 (‘the Listed Buildings Act’) and the corresponding paragraphs of the NPPF and the Council’s Development Plan;
  2. Failure to have regard, and apply, relevant policies of the newly adopted Torquay Neighbourhood Plan;

This what Historic England said about the scheme:

Historic England does not accept that this revised proposal will either conserve or enhance the character of the Conservation Area and we maintain that a more contextual response should be sought.”

Torquay Neighbourhood Plan


The question, then, is whether this will have a bearing on proposals for the Drill Hall in Sidmouth – which lies within the Port Royal Conservation Area:

Drill Hall plans: shades of grey

Drill Hall plans endorsed – with recommendations