Derry Area Plan 2011
Built Environment: Proposals/Policies (Page 2 of 4)
To preserve and where possible enhance the character and appearance of Conservation Areas, the Department will:
- resist the total or substantial demolition of a building or buildings where they make a positive contribution to the character of an area;
- require that special attention is given to the design, form and materials of new development;
- seek to ensure retention of trees important to the character of an area; and
- implement a programme of enhancement schemes as resources permit.
The Plan sets out the broad policy criteria under which applications within the Conservation Areas will be judged. There are currently 2 Conservation Areas in the District, the Historic City centred on the Walls and the Clarendon Street Conservation Area (Maps BE 1 and BE 2). The Department will also have regard to PPS 6 and its publications, “Londonderry Historic City Conservation Area” (February 1977) and “Londonderry Clarendon Street Conservation Area” (February 1978).
Within Conservation Areas consent is normally required for the total or substantial demolition of a building. The Department will normally resist the removal of chimneys, skyline features, entrance steps and other parts of buildings and the streetscape which contribute to the character, interest and quality of Conservation Areas. Consent to demolish an unlisted building within a Conservation Area will normally only be granted where it can be shown that it is wholly beyond repair, incapable of reasonable beneficial use or where its removal or replacement would benefit the appearance or character of the area. Demolition will normally only be permitted where there are approved detailed plans for redevelopment.
In the commercial parts of the Conservation Areas the design, form and materials of shop fronts, signs and fascias can both add to, and have adverse impacts upon, the character of the area. The Department will seek to ensure that a high standard of design is achieved in any proposed replacement shop fronts and advertisements in such areas.
The Department will normally permit development adjacent to the Walls provided it is in accordance with the guidelines set out in Appendix 3.
The City Walls, built between 1613-1618 define the limits of the original planned settlement and are now in the Department’s care. They are a distinctive townscape feature, and are of major public interest. A number of sites have an adverse impact on views of and from the Walls, and the Department will encourage their sympathetic redevelopment over the Plan period (see Map 3 Central Area and Appendix 3). Demolition has opened up new views of the Walls, but has resulted in the loss of some streets and buildings which reflected the pattern of the historic settlement outside the Walls. The Department considers that it is important to retain the surviving street pattern in the vicinity of the Walls and Conservation Area powers will be used to control demolition.
The Department will continue to undertake small scale environmental improvements and maintenance to the fabric of the Walls as appropriate.
An ongoing programme of conservation and environmental improvements has upgraded both the structural integrity and visual amenity of the Walls. Such schemes will be judged against Conservation Area and Historic Monument policies.