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18/00046/LBC | Conversion of Mill to create 21 dwellings with small business units and cafe. Demolition of sheds. Construction of 4 new dwellings. Provision of car parking, gardens and landscaped areas. (Listed Building Consent) | Old Town Mill Old Town Mill Lane Old Town Hebden Bridge Calderdale
  • Total Consulted: 0
  • Comments Received: 3
  • Objections: 2
  • Supporting: 1
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Ms judy lloyd (Supports)

Comment submitted date: Mon 19 Feb 2018

in principal this seems a good plan, the building is deteriorating, my only concern is the increase in traffic up to old town as the roads are very narrow and the dry stone walls unforgiving, what can be done to ease this ?

Miss Amber Patrick (Objects)

Comment submitted date: Thu 08 Feb 2018

The Association for Industrial Archaeology notes that this application is for the conversion of the majority of the buildings known as Mitchells Mill but with the demolition of weaving sheds and other attached single storey sheds. This is a surprisingly complete site and therefore an important one. The survival of its chimney is a significant landmark and this makes the site an easily identifiable one. The proposal is for mixed use with 25 residential units and two commercial ones. The development will ensure the retention of the 1851 mill, the carding mill, the boiler/engine house and chimney and some other buildings but does mean the loss of the north light sheds which abut both mills. As these buildings obscure the bottom floor windows of the 1851 mill it is clearly a later addition.

There is no separate heritage statement which is to be regretted as some of the relevant historical information and the historic building details are to be found spread over three documents: the combined Design and Access and Heritage Statement; the Feasibility Study (includes historical details); the Visual Structural Survey which has some useful photographs. In particular, whilst the north light weaving shed(s) may not be important, their dating and history should have been available so that their possible importance could have been judged. An adequate heritage statement/assessment would have enabled a fuller understanding of the development of the site as a whole, especially as there are clearly details available as indicated by the historic photographs in the Feasibility Study.

The proposals will enable the mill buildings to survive, as at present they are underused and parts have suffered from neglect which has allowed water penetration with the resultant adverse effects on the buildings. The proposal is for ten town houses in the Carding mill and eight in the 1851 mill with the ground floor being for the business units. There will be one residential unit in engine/boiler house. It is stated that the design approach is intend to enable the retention of beams, columns, cast iron shoes for the roof trusses which are a feature of Calder Valley mills, and saddle lintels showing in the interiors of the units as opposed to in the party walls. This is to be welcomed. However, there are other features such as the remains of winding machinery in both the 1851 Mill, and on the top floor of the Carding Mill, and it is not clear whether these too will be retained, either in situ or elsewhere on the site (photos in the Visual Structural Survey). Other interesting features include the remains of delicate wrought iron balconies on the Carding Mill. Also, the two storey Court Yard buildings have some interesting features, notably cast iron columns and an upper floor on cast iron beams and with a flag floor - what is to happen to the latter? Finally, mention must be made of the engine house and boiler house which is now a two storey building and was part of the original layout being for powering the 1851 mill. According to the Feasibility Study, it housed a beam engine and although alterations have obscured its layout on the exterior of the building, on the interior the arch can be distinguished. It would be nice if this could remain exposed. Externally there is the remains of the valve used to control the flow of water and hopefully this can be retained in connection with the pond. It is understood that electricity was brought to the site in the early 1900s to replace the steam engine and provide a cheaper source of power.

The reuse of industrial buildings for residential use is not always the most suitable one but it is the most secure for the long term survival of buildings. In this case the currently open floors are divided to form the residential units, however, overall this is a good conversion with relatively little changes to fenestration and the insertion of acceptable roof lights. The chimney will remain a landmark feature. The removal of the weaving sheds does enable the base of the mills to become visible. It is unfortunate that a separate heritage statement was not provided giving full details of the development and a history of this interesting site. This should have included the weaving sheds, which whilst they may no longer be in either good condition or appropriate for retention, are part of the site's history. It is clear from the details provided that there is historical detail available. The new build is so situated that it does not detract from the listed buildings. The Association does not object to the conversion of the mill buildings to the proposed uses but it does consider that a separate heritage statement/assessment should be provided and therefore objects to this application. However, it is essential that if this application is approved that there is an adequate recording condition (NPPF para 141) and it would be of benefit if there were an information board giving some historical details in a public area.

Amber Patrick,
Planning Casework Officer,
Association for Industrial Archaeology

Dr Lesley Mackay (Objects)

Comment submitted date: Tue 30 Jan 2018

While I support the application for the development of apartments and business units, I am unhappy about the visual promience of the proposed four new dwellings to the front of the existing mill. I think the presence of these new build dwellings will detract from the visual amenity of the mill which is so prominent a building, not only from down in Hebden Bridge itself but also from Heights Road and the varous walking paths around the area, If these dwellings were deleted from the application, I would be happy with the other aspects proposed.

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