Precedent planning permission granted under SDNPA Dark Night Skies Policy

Posted on September 21, 2016

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We are delighted that planning permission has been granted by the South Downs National Park Authority (SDNPA) for the significant remodelling of this substantial 1920s property which enjoys an elevated position on the outskirts of Haslemere, Surrey. The design includes fully glazed south facing facades which meet the new requirements under the Dark Night Skies Policy.

ArchitectureLIVE was approached during the purchase of the property with a brief to remodel and refurbish the existing house in order to provide a modern five bedroom family home with a dedicated home office and fitness suite, including a gym, indoor pool and viewing terrace, to take advantage of the far-reaching, southerly views across the picturesque West Sussex countryside. The remodelling of the existing, tired building envelope and unattractive approach to the property were also added to the brief.

Characterised by prominently tiled mansard roofs, which form the first floor accommodation and loft, the property had been unsympathetically extended on a number of occasions. This included an attached, flat roofed artist studio as well as a prefabricated detached garage and numerous outbuildings.

ArchitectureLIVE’s design removes all unattractive additions to be replaced with sympathetic extensions partly in keeping with the existing style of the property yet also adding new design elements to express and serve modern modes of living. The existing property will thus gain two bookend extensions to frame the existing building. The new single garage and double carport will also be sited in such a way to form an entrance courtyard with a new entrance and hall to the main house as its focal point.

Extensive internal alterations will open up the existing cell-like living spaces to create a flowing sequence of kitchen, dining and secondary living. The existing, undersized attached double garage will be converted into a play room and the existing first floor accommodation will be rationalised to provide additional en-suites and bathrooms and a new master bedroom suite. Thermal improvements to the building envelope will complete the project.

Given the elevated position of the property and its potential impact on the SDNP, ArchitectureLIVE carried out a high level visual impact assessment to demonstrate the negligible impact of the proposal on the setting of the National Park. 

Another important aspect for the design was the newly evolved Dark Night Skies policy, adopted by the SDNPA earlier in the year. Any client’s desire to take advantage of a stunning location with magnificent far reaching views is now juxtaposed by the need to limit any additional nighttime light pollution. ArchitectureLIVE’s extensive research and close collaboration with the SDNPA provided the solution for this project by adapting state-of-the-art glass technology. Please contact us if you would like to know more.



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