St James Parade Conservation Area extended: aerial of proposed extended St James Conservation Area

14 Aug 2018

Housing and Planning

St James Parade Conservation Area extended

 A Bristol city centre conservation area has been extended to protect additional places of special architectural and historic character.

The boundary of the St James Parade Conservation Area now includes space surrounding the old BRI building and the former eye hospital.

The decision by Bristol City Council means that stricter planning controls will apply to ensure historic character is recognised and reflected in future developments in this area.

Cllr Nicola Beech, Cabinet Member for Spatial Planning and City Design at Bristol City Council, said:

“Conservation areas help us to preserve and enhance Bristol’s special character through the planning process. As our city centre continues to thrive as an area to live, work and invest in, we should keep conservation boundaries under review to ensure our heritage is protected. The St James Parade Conservation Area has been extended in light of the listing of the Georgian chapel within the old BRI site.

“After consulting on the extension and conducting a new appraisal of the old BRI site, the council has concluded there is sufficient special historic and architectural interest to warrant an extended area. This designation is a good example of how we can apply appropriate planning controls to strike the right balance between accommodating growth and maintaining historic and cultural sensitivity in a city with over 4,000 listed buildings.”

The extension follows the national listing of the Georgian chapel within the old BRI site by Historic England in September 2017, and recognises the combined value of these buildings and the presence nearby of the church and Priory of St James, a 12th century Benedictine priory.

The Bristol Royal Infirmary was created in the 18th century and the existing old hospital building retains elements of the late 18th-early 19th century infirmary. As one of the oldest provincial infirmary buildings in the country, it is of significant historic interest. Despite the later 19th century and 20th century alterations, the infirmary building remains a significant local historic landmark in terms of its scale, form and materials.

Details of the appraisal of the extended conservation area can be found at the council's website.