Belfast Metropolitan Area Plan 2015
District Proposals: Lisburn Countryside Urban Environment
Historic Parks, Gardens and Demesnes
Larchfield Demesne, situated to the east of Hillsborough, is fully enclosed by walls. The house dates from 1834 and is listed, as are the stables and coach house. The site provides a good example of a traditional demesne adapted to modern use.
The gardens at Kilwarlin Moravian Church, situated to the west of Hillsborough consist of a Battle Garden, of which there are very few examples in the UK. The church was built in 1755, improved in 1834 and is listed.
Further details of each Historic Park, Garden and Demesne are included in a register of Historic Parks, Gardens and Demesnes of special historic interest in Northern Ireland, to be published by the Environment and Heritage Service, DOE. This Register will summarise the historical significance of each site and the contribution that its planned features make to the local landscape. It will also seek to encourage the public, and owners, to value and support the protection and maintenance of such sites.
Prevailing regional policy for the protection of Historic Parks, Gardens and Demesnes of special historic interest is set out in PPS 6 Planning, Archaeology and the Built Heritage. Additional information about each site is contained in the Countryside Assessment Technical Supplement.
Area of Significant Archaeological Interest
The Giant’s Ring, situated within the Lagan Valley Regional Park, is one of the most important prehistoric monuments in Northern Ireland, and knowledge of the monument has been enhanced by recent studies identifying a major complex of related sites in the surrounding area. Its prominent elevated location surrounded by a combination of open fields and mature woodland is both visually impressive and archaeologically significant. The Department will seek to encourage the positive management and, where possible, the enhancement of this ASAI in order to promote the appreciation of this significant archaeological resource.
The advice of the Department’s Environment and Heritage Service as well as the Historic Monuments Council will be a major consideration in deciding on the acceptability or otherwise of any proposals which may affect the area.
The Department will use its development control powers to ensure that the setting of the monument is preserved and that development does not have a detrimental effect on sites and monuments or the character, appearance or visual amenity of the surrounding landscape. Accordingly, there will be a general presumption against large-scale developments within the ASAI, such as quarrying or mining operations, waste disposal, industrial units or major tourism schemes and proposals for the erection of masts or pylons. It is considered the scale and overall impact of such proposals could be particularly damaging to the distinctive appearance, character and heritage interests of the area. Other development proposals will be determined on their merits having regard to the Department’s regional planning policies and Plan Proposals. Should planning permission be granted for development within this area the Department will require the implementation of mitigation works.