Well house conversion fails impact tests

A proposal to convert a derelict listed well house in north London into a nursery and dwelling has been rejected on the grounds that the works would not preserve its architectural and historic value.

The inspector accepted that the former water storage facility would require some intervention to equip it for another use. However, he found the appellant's plans to enclose the ambulatory unacceptable because it would change the tall, slender structure with its subservient arcade into a wider, chunkier building, eroding much of its interest and attractiveness.

The appeal also proposed works to underground tanks that the inspector considered interesting structures worthy of preservation. He judged that digging away the ground and adding features to the outside of the underground drum would compromise the historic interest. It would also affect the architectural character, appearance and setting of the upper parts, he held.

The inspector could see that the upper parts of the well house were vulnerable and there might well be an imperative to find a beneficial use sooner rather than later. However, he did not consider the underground parts to be in such need of urgent work. These works would adversely affect features that should be preserved, he concluded.

DCS Number 100-051-118

Inspector John Papworth; Written representations.

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