Trailer held to harm visitors' experience

A proposal by the National Trust to retain a trailer in the car park of Lawrence of Arabia's grade II listed cottage in Dorset has been rejected because it would impinge on the historic context and setting.

The trailer, for which temporary planning permission had been granted, provided a visitor reception area, shop and limited welfare facilities for staff and volunteers. The inspector noted that the cottage's special interest lay in its historical connection with TE Lawrence and the fact that the interior and exterior were virtually unchanged, rather than its simple vernacular form and construction.

He recognised that the green-painted trailer was relatively compact but considered it an unattractive, bland, utilitarian structure of little intrinsic merit. He acknowledged that it was not directly visible from the cottage but noted that it was the first and last thing that visitors would see at the site. In his view, it had a detrimental impact on the wider setting of the listed building.

DCS Number 100-051-146

Inspector Philip Willmer; Written representations.

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