95 Cowley Road Oxford OX4 1HR
18 March 2018
Alterations to existing shop front and erection of new external fence to create outdoor seating area and formation of external lighting.
The very brief design & access statement says a heritage statement is attached but this does not seem to be the case. The building is Grade 2 Listed and is very attractive. The proposed changes do not contribute positively to the building or its setting. The current signage is in an appropriate Arts & Crafts style. The proposed modern lettering of the new signage is inappropriate. The proposed additional two daily information boards will add clutter to the facade. The proposed new ‘external fence / outdoor seating’ benches will block the view of the architecture. The festooned lighting hanging from the fence will obscure the building, in contrast with the present lighting which illuminates it. The proposed two crown cork Big Society logos on the seating are not in keeping. Whilst the aspiration of maintaining the viability of the pub is strongly supported, there is no evidence that the proposals are necessary. They will do nothing for the streetscape or character of Cowley Road, where historic photographs reveal the mess of modern signage compared with the elegance of the signage contemporary to the architecture. The proposed changes here reinforce that point and should be refused.