52 St John Street Oxford OX1 2LQ
14 June 2017
Formation of bay window to second floor rear elevation with replacement of roof from mono pitch to flat. Replacement of balcony at rear ground floor and first floor front elevation. Replacement of window for door at basement level. Insertion of 1no. window at ground floor side elevation. Fit vents to front and side elevation.
The Society is strongly opposed to unnecessary additions to the frontages of the Grade II listed houses that together define the historic character of the street. The Society therefore objects to the insertion of a “decorative” balcony. There is no evidence that a balcony has ever existed on the front of this house. The small filled holes on either side of the window just above sill level could not possibly have served as anchorage for a balcony because they are neither low enough nor high enough to have served that purpose. This is therefore not a case of restoring something that existed before.
The Society also objects to the proposed new vents which, if allowed, would set a precedent which could be followed in other properties. No other houses in the street have vents in the positions proposed for No 52. Here again, the Society is strongly opposed to unnecessary additions to the frontages of the Grade II listed houses that together define the historic character of the street.
We are also concerned about the creation of what could easily become a separate flat in the basement. Any consent given for this aspect of the design should be conditional upon the basement not being used as a separate dwelling.