October 2005


We would like to thank:

Everyone who helped to prepare this document by participating in the consultation process. All completed and returned comments sheets and feedback from the conservation area workshops held in Steeton have been used to re-draft this assessment.

West Yorkshire Archaeology Service (WYAS) for providing historical and architectural information on Steeton.

1. Introduction

1.1 What does Conservation Area Designation Mean?

A conservation area is an ‘area of special architectural or historic interest the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance’ (Section 69 of the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990).

They were first introduced into British legislation by the Civic Amenities Act of 1967 and are an attempt to protect the wider historic environment. An area may warrant designation if, for example, it has an historic layout of streets, or exhibits the characteristic materials, style and landscaping of the region in which it is situated or of a certain period of history. They are cohesive areas in which the interaction of buildings and spaces creates unique environments that constitute irreplaceable components of our local, regional and national heritage.

Conservation areas are designated by the Council, which has a statutory duty to review its historic districts from time to time, in order to ascertain whether further conservation area designations are deemed to be appropriate. Designation confers a general control over the demolition of buildings, strengthens controls over minor development and makes special provision for the protection of trees. More detail on legislative controls in conservation areas can be found in Appendix 3 of this document.

In addition, in exercising its planning powers, the Council has a statutory duty to pay attention to the desirability of preserving and enhancing the character and appearance of conservation areas. Bradford Unitary Development Plan contains a number of policies that have been formulated to provide the mechanism for this objective to be realised (see Appendix 3). These measures aim to ensure that the interest of designated areas is retained for future generations, their environmental quality is preserved or enhanced and local distinctiveness and sense of place is safeguarded.

1.2 What is the Purpose of Conservation Area Assessments?

The City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council has prepared this assessment of Steeton Conservation Area in order to fulfil its statutory duty to review its conservation areas from time to time, and to formulate and publish proposals for their preservation and enhancement. It forms part of an ongoing programme of conservation area assessment and review being undertaken by the Conservation Team, which aims to:

A summary of the draft of this assessment, a proposed boundary map, a cover letter, a comments sheet and an invitation to the conservation area workshop, were distributed to every address within and local to the conservation area in August 2003. At the same time a copy of the full draft Conservation Area Assessment, proposed boundary maps, comments sheets and invitations to the conservation area workshop were placed on deposit at Keighley Library, Keighley Planning Office and on the Council’s website.

The consultation period ran between August and November 2003. Feedback was received on completed comments sheets and at the conservation area workshops which were held at St Stephen’s Church Hall, Steeton on 22nd September and 6th October 2003. The feedback from the local community has been used:

This document will provide a framework for the controlled and positive management of change in Steeton Conservation Area and form a basis on which planning decisions in the area are made. It may also provide the foundation on which the Council can make bids for funding to assist property owners with works to the fabric of their buildings, or to restore derelict structures. It is, however, not intended to be comprehensive in its content and failure to mention any particular building, feature or space should not be assumed to imply that they are of no interest.

The assessment should be read in conjunction the Bradford Unitary Development Plan and national planning policy guidance, particularly Planning Policy Guidance 15 (PPG15): Planning and the Historic Environment. These documents provide more detailed information on local and national policy relating to conservation areas.

1.3 Steeton Conservation Area

Steeton Conservation Area was originally designated in September 1980. It covers the oldest surviving part of the village, incorporating St Stephen’s Church, the two manor houses (High Hall and Low Hall) and part of the former toll road between Keighley and Skipton (High Street).

The pre-19th century core of the village, with the beck running through the middle, has a distinctly ‘rural village’ feel which is emphasised by the small cottages that line the roads and the rising green valley sides that provide the backdrop to the south of the village. The surviving mill buildings provide an interesting contrast and document the growth and development of the village following the Industrial Revolution and arrival of the textile industry.

 2. Location and Population

Steeton with Eastburn is situated approximately 3 miles northwest of Keighley and 6 miles south of Skipton. The village is bisected by Steeton Beck, which once formed the township boundary between Steeton and Eastburn. The River Aire flows through the valley bottom to the north and east of the village and creates a natural division between Steeton and Silsden, approximately 2 miles to the north.

The 1996 mid-Census estimate shows the approximate population of the conservation area to be 1000 residents (the village as a whole approx. 3000). Between 1991 and 1996 the number of people living in the conservation area increased by approximately 3.4% (as opposed to 1.6% in the district as a whole).

3. Origin and Historic Development

Summary of Historical Interest

The historic significance of the area can be judged by the extent of the survival of elements that testify to the past ways of life, such as the street pattern, built form, archaeological remains and detail. If the area has associations with an historical figure or event, or has traditionally been of local importance, as a meeting place or cross roads, its historic interest can be considered to be greater. The quality of what has survived naturally has a bearing on its level of interest.

The following summarise the factors that make the area covered by Steeton Conservation Area of historical interest:

The village of Steeton is located approximately 3km northwest of Keighley and 6km south of Skipton. The village is situated in Airedale on the millstone grit of the Upper Carboniferous period. The settlement stands on the lower valley slopes of Steeton Moor, to the south of a crossing point over the River Aire. It is one of a number of farming hamlets that developed alongside the cross-valley route between Glusburn and Keighley. Steeton is a township within the ancient parish of Kildwick (in North Yorkshire) and historically lies within the wapentake and liberty of Staincliffe.

Evidence of early pre-Conquest settlement is sparse and is represented by a Bronze-Age axe and a 3rd century Roman coin, both found within or in close proximity to Steeton. It is also believed that the Keighley to Glusburn route partly followed the conjectural course of a Roman road (Margary, 1973), which connected Bradford to Glusburn and the Roman fort at Elslack 3 miles further on. Between Keighley and Steeton it is thought that the Roman road followed the line of Hollins Lane that becomes Hollins Bank Lane as it enters the village. An archaeological excavation in 1921 in the field opposite The Hollins (SE 0455-4332, PRN 3473), revealed an undisturbed section of road 16ft wide, with stone kerbstones and a camber of 18 inches. These remains are generally considered to be Roman (Margary, 1973).

Although there are no records of when the settlement first came into existence the name Steeton or Stiuetone is recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086 and suggests a settlement of Anglo-Saxon origin. The name is thought to be derived from the Old English elements stylic, a stump, and tun, a farmstead – meaning a farmstead built of or amongst stumps (Smith, 1961). An alternative suggestion for the origin of the name is derived from the village’s first Saxon possessor, named Stephen. Early documentation suggests the settlement’s name was actually Stiveton, meaning Stephen’s town, which appears to affirm this assertion (Shearing, 1981).

Steeton Beck is thought to have been the historic boundary between the two Domesday vills of Steeton and Eastburn. By the late 13th century they had been amalgamated to form the combined township of Steeton with Eastburn (Faul & Stinson, 1986). Steeton manor was held by a number of major landowning families including the Percys and the Cliffords. The De Stiveton family were underlords of the manor between the 12th and 14th centuries. The best known member of the family was Robert, a Knight in the Service of King Edward I. He was known to have fought in two of the Crusades and following his death in 1307 was given a magnificent funeral service at Bolton Priory. His effigy can be seen at Kildwick Parish Church.

After the de Stiveton family the Plumptons succeeded as lords of the manor of Steeton in the 15th century. After the death of Robert Plumpton in the 16th century the manor was divided and the land eventually became freehold. The largest freehold owners were the Garforths who resided at Steeton Hall and subsequently purchased the hall and lands in the 17th century.

Documents suggest that by the 13th century a manor house and chapel were situated here. A charter granted by the prior of Bolton in the 13th century allowed Elias de Stiveton to celebrate divine service in his chapel at Steeton. The site of this chapel, as indeed the layout of the village, is unknown. The chapel may have been an oratory within or near the manor house, with some farmsteads situated near the manor house and early route ways across the valley. It is most likely that dwellings were situated away from the river crossing since the area, prior to 19th century improvements to the river, was prone to flooding. Poll tax records of 1379 reveal that 21 married couples and 17 single inhabitants resided within the township of Steeton, which included Eastburn. For comparative purposes, it is interesting to note that at this time Keighley was reported to have 108 inhabitants and Skipton 127.

Later records from 1583 reveal that Steeton comprised of a number of tenements, a manor house and mill. A total of 26 tenants paid rental on land and tenements here in 1583, compared to Eastburn in which there were only 9 tenants. Anthony Garforthe paid £12 rent for the manor house, and 24 shillings for the corn mill, watercourses and dams, situated on the side of Steeton Beck. Many holdings comprised a dwelling, barn, orchard, garden and croft; one of the holdings was supposedly used as a manor court in times past. There was no woodland of any significance or value. Common land comprised of around 300 acres of heathland on Steeton Moor, where tenants of Steeton and Eastburn had common pasture for their cattle. It is believed that Steeton was the second largest township in the Kildwick parish, but its population diminished in the 17th century, possibly due to the change in land holdings when groups of small holdings were merged to form larger holdings and fewer tenancies (Clough 1886).
The present Steeton Hall may well have been built on the site of the earlier manor house. The hall was rebuilt, according to a datestone, by the Garforth’s in 1662. In the late 18th century a carriage drive and garden features were created, but after the sale of the hall in 1819 the carriage drive was redirected and around 1863 the hall was partly rebuilt. It is traditionally believed that a small plot of land to the rear of the hall, subsequently incorporated into a larger enclosure, was a former burial ground though no evidence exists to substantiate this (Clough 1886).

Steeton Beck is historically an important feature of the village. It originally defined the boundary of the townships of Steeton and Eastburn prior to their amalgamation. The beck provided power harnessed initially by the waterwheels of the corn mills and later of the textile mills which were built along its banks. Steeton Beck has therefore played a significant role in the development of Steeton and is a key facet of the conservation area.

The earliest available map of the settlement, Jeffrey’s map of 1775, shows buildings situated on both sides of the Keighley - Skipton route with Steeton Beck flowing northwards through the settlement towards the River Aire. The principal route probably relates to Hollins Bank Road as the listed buildings that line the route date from the 17th and early 18th centuries. The Keighley and Kendal Turnpike road of 1752-3 originally followed this route, with the Toll Bar situated at the bottom of Steeton Bank and an Inn named The Pack Horse, known to be in existence in 1799, located nearby.

In the early 19th century the toll road was diverted along a new stretch of road that ran off Hollins Lane and along the line of the present A629 (Skipton-Keighley Road), that runs through the north side of the village. Settlement had also occurred near Steeton Beck, adjacent to Barrows Lane, and in the vicinity of St Stephen’s Road since the Garforth family, c. 1780-90, had demolished several cottages that had stood on the present site of the church, and on each side of the brook near the corn mill.

Barrows Lane forms the lower section of a road that comes over the hill from Braithwaite and Keighley before dropping down into the village. It is likely that the road first came into existence after the enclosure of Steeton Moor in 1845. The dry stone walls which line the road and fields were built after 1845 and are so well constructed that they are considered to be some of the finest dry stone walls of their period in the county (WYAS, 2003).

During the 19th century there were numerous improvements undertaken within the village. These included a new route from the village to the river crossing and a new bridge. Jeffrey’s map of 1775 records a meandering route leading northwards from the village to the river which passed to the east of Steeton Hall. In 1826 the present and more direct route known as Station Road replaced this, improving access to the village and the station.

The County taxpayers funded the construction of Steeton Bridge over the River Aire in 1804-5, to the plans of Bernard Hartley, Surveyor of Bridges to the West Riding. It was built by Benjamin Muschamp and cost £3529 7s 10d to construct (Clough 1886). Previous to the construction of the new bridge, carts and carriers crossed by means of a nearby ford above the present bridge or used Kildwick Bridge. Foot travellers used a wooden bridge, which was situated near Steeton Beck and extant by the 17th century. Other improvements to the infrastructure of the village included the connection of gas and water supplies around 1878, and street lighting in 1883.

The development of the village in the 19th century was probably influenced by industrial activity such as cotton, and subsequently worsted and bobbin mills. In 1822 Steeton with Eastburn, comprised of a population of 612 living in 136 dwellings. These numbers had doubled by 1861 and by 1881-2 had increased further to 1,497 inhabitants and 357 dwellings. The growth in population encouraged the building of the Wesleyan chapel (1826), the Primitive Methodist Chapel (1850) and then St Stephen’s Parish Church. St Stephen’s Church, one of the most prominent landmarks in the locality due to its tall spire and tower, was built in 1880 and consecrated in 1881 by the Bishop of Ripon.
The first O.S. map of 1852 shows a much-expanded village to that depicted in Jeffrey’s map of 1775. The corn mills located to either side of Skipton Road had since been demolished but Steeton Hall (Low Hall) and Elmsley House (High Hall) are clearly marked and buildings along High Street, Chapel Road and Barrows Lane are discernable.

Since the beginning of the 20th century Steeton has undergone much alteration. Arguably the most dramatic changes being the removal of the malt house and surrounding buildings (with the exception of Bridge House) to the south of Skipton Road. The area on which these buildings once stood is now a pleasant open green space through which the beck runs.

Perhaps the most grievous loss is that of the old Bobbin Mill, which was listed shortly before its demolition in 1985 to make way for a modest housing development, Bobbin Mill Court. The mill building, with its pedimented front and domed cupola on the roof, was a local landmark due to its square tower and tall chimney. The loss of this building and its impact on the conservation area is difficult to judge, though its demolition removed at a stroke the interesting mix of mills and cottages in this part of the conservation area.

4. Topography and Setting

Summary of Topography and Setting

The unique location of Steeton Conservation Area within the surrounding landscape contributes greatly to its form and character. The most significant features of this include:

The topography and setting of Steeton conservation area is an important defining characteristic of the area’s sense of place and character. Just as important are the views within, into and out of the conservation area as these give the area a wider context and often reaffirm historical associations.

The village of Steeton is located approximately 3 miles to the northwest of Keighley and 6 miles south of Skipton. Steeton is located on the south side of the Aire Valley and nestles at the foot of steeply rising land to the south of the village. Historically, Steeton developed in a linear fashion along the line of the old Keighley to Skipton Road (Hollins Bank Lane – High Street) that drops down over the steep hill and into the valley. As the village grew, development crept up the hillside and from the most elevated points, at the top of Steeton Bank, dramatic and far reaching views can be had over the valley towards Silsden and Draughton Moor to the north.

The topography immediately around the village of Steeton varies greatly, creating interesting views and vistas, which add much to the character of the conservation area. The bulk of the village, particularly the later 20th century developments around the periphery of the conservation area, are mainly located at the foot of steeply rising land on the edge of the floodplain of the River Aire. The buildings in the southern half of the conservation area were built onto the steep valley side, allowing good views across the stone and blue slate roofs of the houses below. Beyond the southern boundary of the conservation area buildings and hard surfaces give way to open fields divided by dry stone walls, allotments and scattered farm buildings. The land undulates, creating miniature valleys and peaks with wind-twisted trees on the highest land. Narrow grassy paths, lined by stone walls wind around and between the fields and from this elevated aspect the village is mostly hidden away at the foot of the hillside, with only the highest properties on High Street and Seed Hill Terrace being visible.

These fields provide a pleasant green and rural setting to the conservation area, emphasising Steeton’s past agricultural connections. This land is protected from inappropriate development by Green Belt designation and therefore the setting of the conservation area will remain open and green. To the southeast the steeply rising fields give way to dense woodland at the brow of the hill. The prominent local landmark of the Jubilee Tower, built in 1887 to commemorate Queen Victoria’s jubilee, stands proud of the treetops and is particularly visible from the Skipton Road/Keighley Road junction. The green and wooded hillside forms an attractive backdrop to the conservation area and effectively limits views out of the conservation area, creating a sense of seclusion.

Barrows Lane provides the southwest approach to the village. Just before it enters the conservation area boundary the road runs through the hamlet of Whitley Head after which it narrows into a bottleneck between the stone walls then opens out into a steep downhill approach into Steeton. From this aspect good long distance views can be had of the cluster of stone buildings in the village below. The steeple of the church tower rises up dramatically against the open green fields that separate Steeton from Silsden, which is clearly visible below its wooded crest. These views are particularly important as they allow the settlement to be viewed in context with the surrounding settlements and compound its past rural links.

Redding Wood, on the east side of Barrows Lane, forms the immediate setting to the conservation area at the most southerly point of the boundary. The wood is for the main part unkempt and has partly grown over the filled in dam of Woodlands Mill. The trees and the narrow winding road limit views out of the conservation area towards Whitley Head.

To the north of the conservation area is the River Aire and the railway line. Between the river and the village there has been considerable residential development during the later part of the 20th century. Houses line the eastern side of Station Road and include a number of distinguished Victorian or Arts and Crafts type dwellings, beyond which are the recreational grounds and allotments that allow clear views into the conservation area. Immediately north of Steeton Hall and the cemetery are two open fields, thought to be previously part of the manor estates. Beyond this is the Millennium Business Park, a large industrial development that has a surprisingly limited visual impact on the setting of the conservation area. The buildings in the business park are well screened from most public places by mature trees and greenery. The car parks are included in the conservation area by virtue of the fine mature trees around them and the historical association of the land with the manorial estate of Steeton.

The northern part of the conservation area is characterised by greenery and trees. Buildings such as Steeton Hall, High Hall and the modest housing developments at Steeton Hall Gardens are set within spacious grounds, almost hidden from view by mature trees. These trees help create an air of dignity and refinement and compliment the natural stone walls of the buildings. The plentiful use of trees and greenery around Steeton Court nursing home and the large detached houses off Steeton Hall Gardens minimises the visual impacts of these relatively new developments.

Immediately to the east of the conservation area the land opens out and takes on an undeniably rural character. Keighley Road curves around to the south, following the contours of the land and the general line of the river. To the west the landscape is a contrast to the countryside-feel to the east. 20th century residential development along and around Skipton Road and the large Airedale Hospital creates a more urban picture, though beyond the current limits of these developments are green fields.

Within the conservation area Steeton Beck makes an important contribution to the character and feel of the place. The beck enters the conservation area through Redding Wood to the south and rushes down the valley side and past Woodland Mills, the site of Bobbin Mill and then the historical location of the manorial corn mill. Historically mills were located alongside fast flowing water in order to harness its power and drive their water wheels. Later technological innovations meant that industry was no longer reliant upon water as a principal power source and the close location to transport links became paramount.

Steeton Beck is now valued more for its aesthetic qualities, which adds value and character to the conservation area. When viewed from New Bridge (on High Street) the beck is at its most dramatic, the water flowing fast as it reaches the base of the hillside; the sight, smell and sound of the water as it rushed over rocks is important to the image of this part of the conservation area.

The beck continues across more level ground through the gardens on which the malt house and corn mill once stood and under Cornmill Bridge where it reappears in the park-like setting around the village War Memorial. The presence of the beck adds rural charm to this area. Set amid many fine mature trees, the stream bed is set below its banking and contained within a stone-lined channel bridged by a wooden footbridge.


5. Traditional Building Materials

Summary of Traditional Building Materials

The traditional building materials of the conservation area contribute greatly to its image and character, these are:

Local stone dominates the conservation area and is a fundamental part of its image. Early maps of the area show the presence of stone quarries in the locality and it is likely that most of the pre-20th century buildings were constructed with this stone. Stone has been used in the construction of all eras of building and for boundary walls and is the unifying element that gives the conservation area its coherent feel. Different finishes relate to the period in which the buildings were constructed: 17th century structures tend to be built of roughly dressed rubble; 18th century and early 19th century buildings of hammer dressed stone; and later 19th century and early 20th century buildings of hammer dressed stone in conjunction with ashlar stone. Stone is also used as a means of decorating the later buildings of the area, in the form of carving and added details such as pilasters and finials.

The pointing of traditional stone buildings can have a dramatic impact on the appearance and character of the building. Traditionally stonework would have been pointed with a slightly lighter colour of mortar than the stone itself and recessed between the courses. Unfortunately overly bold or heavy pointing is visible on some of the older stone buildings and this has resulted in a detrimental and dominant appearance.

Much of the visual interest and character of the streetscape is derived from groups of buildings and their relationship to one another. The cleaning of stonework is generally inappropriate in such instances as this can create a ‘patchwork’ effect that can detrimentally affect the unity of the group.

Locally quarried stone slate was used as the roofing material of the earlier buildings of the conservation area. It is this that gives the roofline its characteristic colour and distinctive profile, which complements the colour and texture of the stonework. This roofing material is becoming increasingly rare, as other forms of roofing material have become available and earlier buildings lost, and should therefore be treasured. It was superseded in the late 19th century by Welsh slate, made available by the improvements in transport occasioned by the establishment of the railway network. Slate has a smoother, darker finish than stone slate and can be seen on the later 19th and early 20th century buildings of the conservation area.

Traditional stone slate roof on Steeton Hall Farm

A blue slate roof on St Stephen’s church

Stone setts and York stone flags would have originally been the surface material of many of the roads and pavements in the village. Very little evidence now remains of this as most of the highways have been resurfaced with tarmacadam. Surviving areas of natural stone surfacing include Croft Street and a small area in Ashgrove, as well as natural stone kerbs or stone flags along the pavements on Elmsley Street, Falcon Cliffe, Market Street and Seed Hill Terrace. The colour and texture of this surface complements that of the stone used for building in the conservation area and helps to fuse its image. It adds quality to the area and as a historical street surface is of interest in its own right.

Stone setts to the rear of Croft Street. Very little traditional highway surfacing remains in Steeton, standard modern materials such as tarmacadam have replaced most.

Timber is the traditional material used for the doors, windows and gutters on the older properties and shop fronts of the conservation area that date from the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries.

These features are the most susceptible to change and some have been replaced by modern alternatives, but where the early details have survived they contribute greatly to the integrity of the built form and the quality of the conservation area. Sadly many of the buildings which have been formerly used as shops have lost their original frontages or shop windows and those still used as shops have generally replaced their shop fronts with less traditional styles or have masked them with a proliferation of advertisements.

The glazing style of the windows is very much dependent on the age of the building and varies from the multi-paned sashes of the earlier structures to the single paned sashes of the later buildings. Sadly the timber window frames and doors of the unlisted older buildings in the conservation area have mainly been replaced with less sympathetic modern versions, such as uPVC frames or dark stained timber frames. Untraditional materials and finishes generally look out of place on older buildings and are at odds with their simple character. Where possible it is better to repair rather than replace traditional features. If this is unavoidable, the use of sympathetic replacements is desirable.

The older properties tend to front directly onto the highway or define the limit of their property by low stone walls in front of small hard surfaced yards. Many of the walls are mounted by painted wrought iron, which is used within the conservation area for decorative railings and gateways on many of the late 19th century properties.

6. Architectural and Historic Qualities of the Buildings

Summary of Architectural Interest

The architectural merit of Steeton Conservation Area can be judged by the quality of the buildings within its confines. The age and rarity of the structures, whether they are good examples of a particular building type or age, and whether they display fine craftsmanship and building techniques are all factors in determining their significance. The following have been deemed to contribute to the area’s architectural interest and justify its conservation area status:

Buildings are naturally a dominant feature of the conservation area and it is their quality, siting and interest that chiefly accounts for the designation of Steeton Conservation Area. The design, decoration and craftsmanship of the buildings are all factors in determining their significance, however buildings that are good examples of a particular age, building type, style or technique and those that are evocative of a given region are of particular merit. The finest examples of buildings of historic or architectural interest in the country are listed by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and are subject to Listed Building controls, which aim to protect them from unsympathetic alteration. However, as conservation area designation is area based, it is the group value of buildings that is significant. Therefore, although not all of the buildings in Steeton conservation area are listed, most are of townscape merit and contribute greatly to the feel of the place.

Within the village of Steeton there are a number of listed (Grade II) buildings. These are mainly congregated along and around High Street, which was the old Keighley–Skipton route along which the settlement originally developed. The listed buildings in the village generally include the oldest buildings and those that are the best examples of their architectural type. Both Steeton Hall and High Hall are Grade II listed buildings, as is St Stephens church and a number of other buildings and structures around the village. Details of all the listed buildings are given in Appendix 2 of this document.

In addition to these listed buildings there are a number of other structures that stand out, either as eye catching structures, particularly historically significant buildings or buildings that make a positive contribution to the street scenes of the village. The interaction of all these buildings, as well as open spaces, natural elements and topography all combine to give the conservation area its unique character. In Steeton, the conservation area is focused around the heart of the village and the changes it has undergone are evident in the range of buildings that are located here, including agricultural, industrial, ecclesiastical and residential. The existing boundary excludes much of the later 20th century residential development around the periphery of the village centre.

Within Steeton, much of the architectural interest is taken from the interaction of buildings of different eras and styles. The conservation area can be sub-divided into different character zones, whereby the age and style of the buildings and their spatial relationship creates distinct areas with differing characters. These are identified below as Character Zone 1: High Street and old village, Character Zone 2: The manor houses and their settings, Character Zone 3: residential Victorian and Edwardian Steeton.

6.1 Character Zone 1: High Street and the Old Village

The village of Steeton historically developed in a linear fashion along High Street, conjecturally the line of the Roman road from Keighley along Hollins Lane and that led down Old Bank into the village and along High Street. The line of this road then followed down Chapel Road (which was identified as Parson’s Lane on the 1852 O.S map) and onwards towards Skipton.

This part of the conservation area is characterised by a number of traditional cottage and farmhouse-type buildings constructed in the local vernacular style. Vernacular architecture is indicative of a past way of life and a tangible record of traditional building techniques. It is also significant to the sense of place of the area, as it makes use of materials and techniques specific to the locality. Usually built without the benefit of an architect, somehow it is often taken to imply a fairly humble or practical origin, but this is not the case and several of the vernacular buildings in Steeton are listed due to their historic and architectural value. Good examples are becoming increasingly rare, due to alteration and redevelopment.

Barrows Lane, the lower section of the road that drops down the hill from Braithwaite and Keighley, forms the approach to the conservation area from the south. The dry stone walls that line the upper section of this road were probably constructed some time after 1845, when the road came into use. These walls are well constructed, and are some of the finest dry stone walls of their period in the County. It is a testament to craftsmen long gone that they stand so solidly, belying their true age.

Just before Barrows Lane enters the village, it passes through the hamlet of Whitely Head, after which the road narrows and passes alongside Redding Wood before entering the conservation area alongside Woodlands Mill. Woodlands Mill is set on the east side of Barrows Lane, with part of the ‘new’ mill building fronting gable end onto the lane. The west side of the road is defined by a well-constructed 18th century wall, which was raised in the 19th century and is now backed by hedges of the gardens of the 20th century properties on that side of the road (just outside the conservation area boundary).

The mill was located in the wooded gorge because of its proximity to the fast flowing beck. It has 10 bays of windows on its long side. Set into its roadside gable is a stone archway, partly obscured by a timber sliding door. This was the blacksmith and joiner’s workshop that provided ancillary services to the mill.
‘Old Mill’, the range located furthest from the road, was built c. 1812 for Thomas Pearson and Sons as a water-powered worsted spinning mill. The four-storey mill building, which has a diminishing number of bays due to the slope of the land, is constructed mainly of coursed rubble stone with ashlar dressings and a blue slate roof.

‘New Mill’, the range located immediately to the east of Barrows Lane, was built around 1860. This is the taller of the two buildings, standing at five storeys in height and has a square pyramidal-roofed tower set on the edge of its roof. To the rear of the roadside range once stood a large single-storey weaving shed (now demolished).

In 1847 the mill was purchased by a Keighley mill-owner named John Clough, who introduced steam-power, transforming it into a fully integrated and mechanised factory. It was still in textile production in 1987. At the time of writing (July, 2005), Woodlands Mill is undergoing conversion to residential use, following a long period of vacancy and physical deterioration. This conversion should guarantee the long-term future of the mill buildings (which are Listed Grade II) and ensure that the mill buildings continue to contribute to the conservation area’s visual character and sense of place.

Further down Barrows Lane is a pair of 19th century cottages with stepped roofs set behind low sloping stone walls. Opposite from these once stood the main entrance to the mill which was accessed through an arch-way into the mill-yard.

Just beyond 18 and 20 Barrows Lane, Cartmell Lane slices off to the northwest. On the south side of the lane stands the former industrial works, once used as a photographic laboratory by Worth Ltd. The heavy bulk of its two storey walling, with a gabled range further down hill, casts a shadow across the lane. Attached at right-angles to the rear of the building is a former barn, possibly dating back as far as 1700, that has a tall segmental-arched cart entry and a stone setted yard to its forecourt. Now converted to apartments (Ferndene Court), the development has been undertaken fairly sensitively. The use of a ginger coloured stained timber in the windows is probably the least thoughtful part of the development, rendering these features overly prominent. 

Further downhill, on the east side of Barrows Lane is Bobbin Mill Court, a housing development built on the site of the former mill in the early 1980s. While respecting the local vernacular style to some extent, the use of light-coloured artificial stone that has weathered little is a good example of why current conservation policies usually require natural stone for such developments.

On the west side of Barrows Lane is Barrows House, a modest 3-bay detached early 19th century mill manager/owner’s house. It has a tall stair window set in its rear elevation facing the lane with a 20-paned sash set under the stairs to its elevated back door. It has a wide and windowless north gable, which together with its tall stone boundary wall creates a solid line along the street edge.

To the north of 16 is a row of terraced cottages. Nos. 12 and 14 are an attractive pair of late-18th century cottages with paired doorways that feature impost-blocks. Below them is an earlier terraced row (nos. 2 – 10), built in two phases with quoined angles to the bottom pair and with the date 1710 etched on the lintel of 6.

Opposite from them is Bobbin Mill Close, a disparate group of differently roofed cottages formed out of the remnants of the old mill that formerly stood on the site. No. 2 has an attractive weathervane set on its redundant chimneystack. Immediately below it is Butterfly Mill, an 18th century three-storey semi-industrial building that has stone-framed shop windows and a distinctive doorway with plinth and impost blocks and a wedge shaped lintel. Now converted into residential use, the building retains much of its original character.

To the west of Barrows Lane and High Street is Chapel Road. Fronting directly onto the north side of the road is a row of early-19th century workers’ cottages with plain-stone window surrounds in which are set two-light windows with a single light above. These attractive cottages epitomise the late-18th and 19th century development of the settlement into a busy mill village. Sadly many have lost traditional features such as sash windows and timber doors and the presence of the ubiquitous uPVC is well established.

On the very western boundary of the conservation area is The Hob Hill and its attached former coach-house and stable. Enclosed behind a good stone boundary wall with stepped coping and ashlar gate piers, is the elegant 5-bay Georgian house that has an older back bearing the date 1720 and initials "H S" (Henry Stirk), where there is an arched stair-window with Gothic glazing. Re-fronted around c.1800 in a Regency style, it has a rendered/stuccoed façade with exposed stone window surrounds to its tripartite sashed windows, and unusual long-and-short quoins.

The lower roofed coach house has a segmental-arched entry and varied styles of window including arched, circular and lunettes with raised false-keystones and impost blocks. Within the gardens of The Hob Hill stand several attractive mature trees and shrubs, adding much to the setting of the buildings and character of this part of the conservation area. Opposite is the ultra modern curving white rendered façade of Steeton Health Centre (outside of the conservation area), architecturally an interesting contrast to the dignified and reserved Georgian style of The Hob Hill.

East of Chapel Road is High Street that once formed part of the old coach road between Keighley and Skipton. Along this road there are an interesting and diverse mix of buildings dating from a number of different eras. At its western end is the Soldiers and Sailors Club, occupying an early 19th century house called The Ash and constructed of smooth-faced ashlar stone. It has a formal 3-bay north entrance front, its central doorway retaining its original Regency-style door with six raised panels and a well-cut kneeler on its east side. The building’s west elevation faces onto Chapel Road and has three bays under a hipped roof, its façade incorporating an original shop window.

Set slightly further forward of the Club, around the curve of the road is the three-storey Co-operative shop building (still in its original use). Built around 1900 it has ashlar pilasters framing its shop windows, which are painted a dominant blue colour that detracts somewhat from its attractive frontage. The upper floors have four bays of windows, most in a dilapidated condition, with stepped hoodmoulds and sill bands. Next along are 6 and 8 High Street, a pair of 18th century cottages and then a 19th-century shop (no. 12) that is currently in residential use.

14 –20 High Street are individual cottages formed out of an earlier 17th century farmhouse that has an older back with chamfered mullioned windows but was re-fronted to the street in the early-18th century. The lintel above the central door is carved with the initials ‘WC’ (for William Currer) and dated 1710. During the second half of the 18th century it was an inn called The Star, but is licence and name were moved to a new inn built at the road junction on the main turnpike road to the north. It was then subdivided into cottages in the early-19th century.

East of this stood Bobbin Mill, listed in 1985 and demolished shortly afterwards to make way for the housing development which now stands on the site. The mill building, which had a pedimented front with a clock and domed cupola on the roof and a tall chimney, was of considerable architectural interest.

On the north side of the street are 9 to 29 High Street, a row of 19th century former shops and cottages. Built in two phases, they add some traditional character to the street. No. 13 has a recessed boot-scraper next to its door and above the paired cottage doorways of the earlier buildings that are nos. 15 and 17 is a loading-door, now blocked. These ‘taking in’ doors generally indicate a past involvement in the domestic weaving industry of the 18th and early 19th centuries. A small 18th century stone bridge (named ‘Old Bridge’ on the 1852 O.S. map) carries the road across the beck. From this vantage point there is a pleasant vista up the weir, where another bridge is visible.

From the bottom of the valley slope there are pleasant views up High Street as the old road to Keighley gradually climbs out of the village. Stone-built 19th century cottages front the street. Those on the north side (nos. 21 and 23) have interesting porches built of ashlar stone with flat, corniced roofs. To the front of the dwellings are tiny hard surfaced yards that are bound by low stone walls topped by iron railings. Those on the south side, are earlier, having plain raised window surrounds. Standing above them are two ranges facing gable end onto the roadside. The first is a barn-like structure, currently used as an agricultural merchant’s.

On the opposite side, set obliquely to the road, are 44 and 46 Upper School Street (Grade II listed). Built in the early- 18th century and retaining features typical of the Queen Anne period, they have quoined angles and a moulded plat band. The doorway to no. 44 has a moulded architrave and pulvinated frieze and cornice, above which is a date plaque carved with the initials ‘EGE’ (standing for Edmund and Elizabeth Garforth of Steeton Hall) and the date 1710. On the northern elevation is has a coped gable with moulded kneelers but this detail was lost to the south when another cottage was added in the 19th century. The two ridge chimneystacks are constructed in ashlar stone and are decorated with blind arcading, similar to that at 18 High Street, which was rebuilt in the same year. For a time the property became an inn, The Goat’s Head (named after the Garforth crest), probably around the 1770s when the original route of the Keighley to Kendal turnpike came down Old Bank. Following the opening of a new section of the turnpike (the present Keighley and Skipton Roads) in the early 19th century it reverted back to a dwelling and the inn name and license was moved to its present position opposite the Station Road junction.

1 and 3 Hill Top are set gable-end onto the road on a slightly elevated piece of land and face southeast up the steep hill. Built in the early 19th century, the cottages add much character to the streetscape, due to their unusual juxtaposition with the road and are therefore identified as being a key unlisted building.

25 High Street is set immediately opposite Hill Top and has a curved corner to the street. To the north is a tiny single cell cottage, which has been used as a bakery and a fish and chip shop when it still had a tall thin brick chimney (since reduced). It now forms part of the adjacent house.

At the top of High Street are several mid-20th century bungalows that mark the edge of the development of the village. To the southwest is Bank House Farm, a collection of modest buildings dating from around 1800, its barn converted to a dwelling. The conservation area boundary terminates here and the landscape opens up into open countryside, the road being lined by dry stone walls. Victoria Tower to the east is a visible landmark through the trees.

6.2 Character Zone 2: The Manor Houses and their Settings

At the heart of Character Zone 2 is the busy road junction between Station Road, Keighley Road and Skipton Road, controlled by traffic lights and highly engineered. Standing on the south side of the road is the Goat’s Head public house, its unusual name taken from the heraldic crest of the Garforth family, important local landowners who lived at Steeton Hall for many years. The public house is an interesting building, having quoined angles and gable stacks with integral canted bay windows that front onto the turnpike road. It was probably built in the mid-18th century as a farmhouse that became an inn during the early 19th century following the rerouting of the turnpike road from its original route along High Street. It is identified as being a key unlisted building in the conservation area. The adjacent cottages (6 and 8 Skipton Road) are similarly fenestrated with canted bay windows.

On the north side of the road stands The Old Star, which took the name and licence of an earlier inn on High Street. It was built in the early 19th century and typical of its period, it is double pile (two rooms deep) having a three-bay façade and its broad gable end tabled with coping and kneelers and end stacks. This building is also identified as a key unlisted building due to its contribution to its location at the heart of the conservation area. Set just to the west are 5 and 7 Skipton Road, a pair of early-19th century cottages. These cottages have large square windows in plain stone surrounds and would have originally been one house. Set slightly forward of them is 9 Skipton Road. Built in the early-19th century as a shop, it retains its unusual stone framed shop windows to either side of its central door and has a continuous projecting stone hood above and aprons under the windows. The tabled gables have finely cut moulded kneelers. Set in front of the row is a stone block dwarf wall with curved tops and a pulvinated frieze.

Leading north from the junction is Station Road. Built on to the east side of the inn and facing east onto the road are 1 & 3 Station Road, an early-18th century house with an original stone framed doorway, its lintel carved with the initials ‘TER’ and the date 1732. Above the doorway is a stone framed oval window (blocked) and to either side two-light mullioned windows with chamfered surrounds. The house fronts straight onto the pavement where utilitarian metal railings form a barrier between the pavement and road.

Attached to the north is a row of three cottages (nos. 5-9) dating from around the same period. The end one has a good door case with tie-stones and a deep lintel with chamfered surrounds, as well as having a tabled gable with coping, quoins and a shaped kneeler. There is a passageway next to it that leads to the rear of the longer early-19th century terrace that runs off at an angle to the road. Built in two phases (nos. 11-17, 19-25), they are similarly fenestrated, each having a stone-framed door case to the left of a square stone-framed window with two smaller windows above. All appear to have lost their traditional timber window frames and two have unattractive porches added to the front.

As the terrace runs away from the road, the gardens to the front correspondingly increase in size. The gardens are bound by a low stone wall topped with curved stones aligned to the road, which widens sufficiently to allow room for a small three-bay late 19th century house (27 Station Road) to be set between the terrace and the road, its attractive frontage facing southwards towards the road junction. Its central doorway has an arched fanlight with raised impost and keystone. The roadside gable has retained its original six-paned sashes that have unusual arched heads.

The building retains many original features and makes a positive addition to the streetscape; it is therefore identified as being a key unlisted building in the conservation area. On the opposite side of the road are 12-18 Station Road, which were built in the second half of the 19th century and have bracketed door cases.

Standing on the corner of the road junction with Station Road and Keighley Road is a row of four purpose built shops (still occupied as such) that were built in the early-20th century. To the east of them is a short group of semi-detached houses that date from 1896. All have short walled gardens to their fronts and no. 13 has particularly interesting timber sash windows with stained glass lights in the front elevation.

Station View runs off Station Road at an angle. This short terrace of houses and those at the western end of East Parade, dating from between 1890 and 1906. East Parade was built around the turn of the 19th century and has interesting arched fanlights above the door and dentil corniced gutter brackets to the eaves. To the front of the houses are small hard surfaced yards enclosed by a low stone wall that is topped with decorative iron railings. Unusually, all the houses have retained their railings and these add much interest to the streetscape. Ash Grove and Murton Grove display similar features and make a positive contribution to the conservation area.

Attached to the north side of 27 Station Road is a later pair of early-20th century purpose-built shops (29 and 31 Station Road) that have stone pilastered shop windows. Just beyond them a narrow lane leads off the main road to Low Fold, an interesting group of 18th century buildings tucked away from the main road and from public view.
The group includes two separate cottages and a former smithy that has a boulder plinth and a doorway with composite jambs. Its tapestry of varied stonework illustrates that it was a single-storey building originally. A tall stone boundary wall separates them from a builders yard and industrial building that is concealed behind a high stone wall effectively limits views into this area.

Immediately to the south of the Skipton/Keighley Road junction is School Street and Market Street, both lined with mid-late 19th century terraces. To the rear of The Goat’s Head public house is a long rear range and barn with a segmental-arched cart-entry, a reminder of its days as a coaching-inn. It has margin-dressed voussoirs and retains a plank door, though the main body of the barn has been discretely converted for domestic use. Close by it is another barn, set behind 5 School Street, that is painted white similar to barns in the Dales. No. 16 and its attached cottage are built from older stonework and have quoined angles.

The main body of Steeton Junior and Infant School is set on the east side of Market Street and dates from after 1906 (map evidence). It is stone built with multi-gabled classrooms and a blue slate roof. The older section of the school, built in 1851, is located at the southern end of School Street. It is a single storey gabled hall, next to a taller two-storey attached range of classrooms that have heavy stone mullioned windows and a hipped blue-slate roof. Nos. 30 and 32 are located at the head of School Street, facing northwards down the road Accessed from School Street by a narrow footpath running alongside the old village school, they both have decorated and carved Victorian door lintels.

Set on the hillside above School Street is Falcon Cliffe, a row of six terraced houses that date from after 1892. At the eastern end of the street is 51 High Street, a small detached house with gate piers bearing the date 1905. It has shaped bargeboards, typical of the early Edwardian era.

Immediately to the south of Falcon Cliffe are two rows of late 19th century terraced houses. These houses are stone built, with dentil corniced gutter brackets, blue slate roofs and small stone hoods over the doorways. The roofline is distinctive as it steps down with the slope of the hill. This contrasts with the roofline Seed Hill Terrace to the south, which has a continuous sloping roof. Quarry Cottages to the north back onto a former stone quarry that has stone outcrops amongst the bushes and trees. 46-54 High Street are built of random coursed rubble stone and are deceptive in their appearance, looking older than the other terraces around them. However map evidence confirms that they were built between 1906 and 1930.

At the centre of Character Zone 2 is the recently laid out park located between Skipton Road and High Street. Formerly the site of a number of buildings including the manorial corn mill and the malt house, the site of the corn mill is marked out with a circle of old millstones standing around a large cast-bell, set on a stone plinth. Cast onto the side, though badly weathered, is "Donated by Jessy Rodney 1886". It origin is unknown but it may have been associated with one of the mills.

The park is open and grassed over with scattered trees and shrubs, a curving path running through it. Immediately south of Skipton Road is Bridge House, a 3-bay Georgian detached dwelling with coped gables and stacks and a lunette-shaped light set in the apex of its gable. To the roadside front is a dwarf wall that has retained its original wrought-iron railings that have slender turned bars, with dog-bars and turned baluster-shaped newels. Now standing on its own it once formed part of the larger group of buildings that have since been demolished.

To the west is Mill Lane, which forms a link between High Street to the south and Skipton Road to the north. A well-established route, it probably continued down St Stephens Road prior the construction of the new turnpike. Along the west side of the road is a long continuous row of terraced houses, built during the second half of the 19th century. Set between nos. 23 and 25 is a fine basket-arched entrance with finely dressed voussoirs that leads through to the rear of the properties and originally provided access to the ash wagon for sanitary purposes.

At the southern end of the row is Croft House, an earlier dwelling that appeared on the Ordnance Survey map of 1852. The house was built gable end onto Mill Lane, facing south across High Street. Stone built, it has a continuous plat band across the façade and a square ashlar stone porch with an arched doorway and window heads with expressed impost and keystones. The building retains its timber sash windows that compliment the age and character of the building, increasing its historical interest. A high stone wall with curved copingstones surrounds the garden. Croft House is a key unlisted building within the conservation area.

To the west of Mill Lane are Dixon Close and Forge View, 20th century housing developments that add little to the character of the conservation area. The short row of terraced houses in Dixon Close makes an adequate attempt to emulate the traditional cottage development that characterises the conservation area but the use of bungalow housing in Forge View and artificial roof materials has a negative impact on the conservation area.

Further west is Queen Street, a long terraced row of workers’ houses built in the late 19th century (the southern most property being dated 1894) running northwards off Chapel Road. The terrace has a continuous sloping roof, rather than a stepped one and all the dwellings retain their small stone outhouses to the front of the property. At the northern end of the row, the gable ends of terraced properties on Croft Street and Beech Street delineate the eastern side of the lane. The houses on the north side of Beech Street appear to be the earliest, appearing on the 1894 O.S. map, and having more elaborate door cases featuring arched fanlights and the raised impost and keystone decorations seen elsewhere in the village.

Parallel to and contemporary with this terrace are 18-28 Skipton Road. These dwellings have identical door cases and first floor sill bands, with dwarf walls to their fronts. Sadly only no. 28 retains its original railings of a distinctive pattern and unusual cast gate-piers. Further west is The Lodge, which was built as a gatehouse to The Shroggs, a large detached villa set in substantial grounds which covered the area now occupied by The Willows, The Shroggs, Burley Court and Burley Mews. The Lodge was built between 1909 and 1919, when the grounds to The Shroggs were reconfigured and a new driveway and gateway were constructed. These gates, The Lodge and the accompanying sections of wall and railing are all that remains of the former mansion. The Italiantate styling of the stone built Lodge, with a pedimented gable keyed and imposted round headed windows, and corniced and mullioned ashlar windows is probably a reflection of the architecture of the villa The Shroggs.

On the opposite side of Skipton Road is Moorland House, a late 19th century three-bay house on the boundary of the conservation area and fronting onto Skipton Road. Elmsley Street runs off at right angles to the main road and is lined on both sides by long terraces of early 20th century housing. At its junction with Skipton Road is 2 Elmsley Street, a large and stylish Edwardian building with a red tiled roof, and a Venetian window in its prominent gable that has a ball finial crowning its apex. This building makes a more than average contribution to the variety and interest of the streetscene and therefore is considered to be a key unlisted building in the conservation area. To the front of the building is a hard surfaced yard surrounded by a stone wall topped with iron railings.


6.3 Character Zone 3: Residential Victorian and Edwardian Steeton

At the northern end of Elmsley Street is the old stone boundary wall that surrounds the extent of the former grounds of High Hall. The northwest corner of the conservation area is occupied by the cemetery, which is surrounded by a stone wall with octagonal gate piers dated 1896.

On Skipton Road there is a small group of older cottages (nos. 15-17), one of which has a former loading door at first floor. Fronting the junction with St Stephens Road is Holmes House, a laithe house of c. 1800 with a segmental arched barn attached to the left of the main body of the house. The house itself has a symmetrical arrangement of tripartite windows to either side of its central door which is topped by a triangular pediment. The house is set back behind a stone wall with round top-stones backed by a neatly trimmed beech hedge.

St Stephens Road is a quiet unpaved lane leading north off Skipton Road and ending just beyond High Hall. Midway down the lane is St Stephen’s Church and the Sunday School, designed by the Healey brothers (Bradford architects) in the late 19th century. Both are set behind a neat low wall with chamfered ashlar coping. The impressive octagonal gate piers retain the attractive wrought-iron gates that have a bold central fleur-de-lys motif in an Art Nouveau style. The church hall (c. 1896) has a prominent east gable surmounted by a cross and with an attractive Gothic-arched window infilled with tracery and small squares of coloured glass.

The church is well positioned with its tower unusually sited on the south side of the building, topped by the broached stone spire that has Gothic-arched belfry openings. Built in an Early English style, its aisle-less nave has four lancet windows and a gabled south porch. It has a long steeply pitched blue-slate roof and the interior retains its decorative scheme painted with stencil decoration in a medieval style. The east end is built directly onto the lane with angle-buttresses at its corners. The east gable has a three-light window infilled with stained glass (by Powel Brothers of Leeds).

Opposite to the church is a cluster of early 19th century cottages, almost overshadowed by the solid body of the church. Two storeys in height, the cottages are built from hammer dressed stone and roofed in stone slate with a stepped roofline. These cottages, together with the setting of trees and unpaved road to their front, add much character to this part of the conservation area, creating an almost rural feel. Immediately to the north is Steeton Hall Farm, an 18th century listed farmhouse. With its quoined angles and slightly recessed flat-faced mullioned windows, it further enhances the scene along this stretch of road.

At the north end of the road is the long barn/coach house to High Hall. Set across the northern end of the road, it effectively limits views out of the conservation area. The coach house dates back to the early 18th century and has five bays with a central porch. The cart entry has a shouldered lintel and a 3-light double-chamfered mullioned window above. It has a number of doorways, some of which are blocked, with chamfered stone surrounds. The building is slightly unusual, having 3 bays of mullioned windows with leaded-light glazing, a feature not normally found in an agricultural/non-residential building. It is likely that these windows were inserted into an earlier barn to provide light, possibly in the middle of the 18th century, around the time it was probably converted into a coach house. The western end of the barn is divided off at the first floor and was used as a photographic darkroom for the owner Alex Keighley, a noted local photographer in the 1920s and 30s.

The east side of St Stephens Road is bounded by a stone wall, built in 1921 in an Arts and Crafts style and topped by wooden railings (the original iron railings have been sent away for restoration). The wall and railings continue around the northern end of the road and to the front of the coach house. The square ashlar stone gate piers to High Hall itself are topped with stone ball finials. Along the boundary of the gardens are a variety of evergreen and deciduous trees and shrubs that provide a green and dignified setting to the hall, which can be glimpsed through the foliage.

On approach to High Hall, a Grade II listed building, the driveway curves round and towards the impressive entrance front which is dominated by a two-storey gabled porch that is unusually constructed from white Bath limestone. The house is built in a Jacobean style to the designs of Godfrey L. Clarke, a London-based architect and son of one of the vicars of St Stephens’s church. He remodelled the house in 1921 for the Keighley family. It is likely that Clarke refronted the house entirely at this time, resulting in the five-bay symmetrical façade and cruciform windows that exist today. The gable ends reveal well cut coursed masonry and an older plinth of a three storey tower-like building of possibly 16th century origin. At attic level there are characterful small mullioned windows.
Attached to the rear of the house, at right angles to the main building is a 17th century farmhouse with double chamfered mullioned windows. Several of the windows in this range are 1920s replacements, though the internal doorway has a decorated lintel dated 1674. The principal feature of its interior is its 1920s oak-panelled entrance hall with an impressive stairway.

To the west of the house is an impressive Arts and Crafts garden that also dates from 1921, when the house was remodelled. The garden provides a fine setting to the hall, though is of historical interest in its own right, being a rare survival of its type and featuring raised terraces with areas of formal planting. A water feature in the form of a narrow canal with a circular pool is set in the middle of the garden. The boundary wall has several interesting features, including a dovecote in one corner and a viewing platform with a room underneath in which is a carved coat-of-arms. In one wall is a stone engraved with ��IBG 1781’ and the former vegetable garden is bound by a wall constructed from hand made Georgian bricks.

To the northeast of High Hall is Steeton’s other manorial hall, formerly known as Low Hall, now Steeton Hall (currently in use as a hotel). Set in grounds to the west of Station Road, the approach is to the rear elevation of the building along a curving driveway lined with mature trees and shrubs. The trees are particularly dense along the south boundary and this effectively limits views into and out of the grounds, creating a secluded and quiet enclave.

The rear elevation of the house has first floor windows with segmental lintels with earlier date stones (1611 and 1662) set into the rendered mid-19th century wall. The main entrance is in a modern single storey extension set between dumpy stone Doric columns. Built against the south elevation is a conservatory extension that forms the main part of the hotel’s restaurant. The west elevation was originally the front of the house and is therefore the principal elevation. It has a three-bay Georgian façade in a Classical style with raised quoins, a plat band and rendered walls. The central bay window is set forward under a pedimented gable, having a Doric porch with cast-iron railings to its parapet. Set before this entrance is a curving forecourt that acts as a raised platform with the beck running alongside it. At this point the beck has been widened slightly, most probably to create a water feature.

Set immediately to the north of Steeton Hall is the car park to the modern Millennium Business Park, the parking bays surrounded by trees and defined by hedges. Only the car park lies within the conservation area boundary, the rest of the park and the buildings are outside of the boundary and are visible through the trees.

Due east of Steeton Hall is Summerhill Lane, leading off Station Road at right angles and running along the northern boundary of the football and cricket pitches. The houses at Summerhill and Station Road, which were mainly constructed in the late 19th/early 20th century, are large detached buildings of a variety of architectural styles. Those along Station Road are the earliest, with Woodlands, Ivy Bank and Westfield appearing on the 1891 O.S. map. These properties are typical Victorian villas set behind substantial stone walls. All appear to have retained their timber sash windows, some of which contain stained glass upper lights. Woodlands is particularly prominent, being located on the corner of Station Road and Summerhill Lane and consequently is identified as being a key unlisted building.

Along Summerhill Lane, the properties are built in a variety of architectural styles typical of the early 20th century; Vernacular Revival and Arts and Crafts houses are both represented along this north side of the lane. Vernacular Revival is a form of architecture that mimics a traditional style of house building, often resulting in a property that seems older than it really is. Poplars Lodge is a good example of this type of architecture, which was later replaced by the more innovative Arts and Crafts style. Oakfield Lodge is a dignified and interesting house set behind solid stone walls and gate piers and built in a Vernacular Revival-influenced style and is another key unlisted building in the conservation area.

The Arts and Crafts style was a new and innovative form of architecture that became popular in the early 20th century, utilising inventive styles of building. Red clay tile roofs are a common feature of Arts and Crafts houses, such as that seen on Holmlea, as are numerous gables with varied rooflines, decorative bargeboards and stained glass set into timber window frames.

To the south of Steeton Hall is Steeton Hall Gardens, a late 20th century residential development of large detached houses, stone built in a vernacular style incorporating traditional features such as flat-faced mullion windows. The houses are set well back from the road, which crosses Steeton Beck via a small stone bridge and there is good landscaping around the junction with Station Road.



7 . Open Spaces and Natural Elements

The number, size, shape and treatment of open spaces within the conservation area are an integral part of its form and interest:

The interrelationship of the built form with space in the conservation area is a fundamental component of the character of the place. The size, shape and treatment of these spaces are all factors in determining whether, for example, the area takes on a domestic, rural, urban, industrial or civic aspect. The variety in size and quality of open space serves to reiterate the differences between the three Character Zones.

The north of the conservation area (Character Zone 3) is notable for the greenery and fine trees that surround the buildings and screen areas from the roads and includes the War Memorial garden along with the cemetery. Character Zones 1 and 2 are more built up, the rows of terraced housing and organic clusters of cottages and commercial buildings lack large gardens or private space. Both areas have considerable amounts of green open space though, and Steeton Beck, which runs through all three zones, is a fundamental unifying natural element.

7.1 Open Spaces and Natural Elements of Character Zone 1

High Street runs through Character Zone 1 and it is likely that the village grew up in a linear fashion along this routeway. As a consequence the buildings around High Street tend to be the oldest in the village and therefore the interest and charm of this area is mainly derived from its built form, set against a backdrop of open fields and rising land to the south. The buildings have been densely laid out and constructed in an almost organic manner, creating interesting spatial relationships and vistas between them but leaving little room for gardens or private space. The fast flowing beck, which runs down the hill alongside Woodlands Mill and then underneath High Street is an important unifying natural element within the area.

Woodlands Mill, located in the south-eastern corner of the conservation area, is set in a wooded clough and consequently is surrounded by trees and greenery.

To the northwest of Woodlands Mill is Cartmell Lane, on the north side of which is a recreational ground that steps down the hillside in a series of grassy terraces. Almost entirely open with only a few scattered trees, this area appears to be used informally as a play area for children or for local residents to walk their dogs. As well as providing an important recreational facility, this space provides a green setting to the buildings along Chapel Road and Cartmell Lane and allows good long distance views across the valley.

At the eastern end of the Character Zone 1, High Street climbs up Old Bank and exits the village. As it does so the buildings become sparser, giving way to open fields and the road widens out a little. This area has a distinctly rural feel, compounded by the presence of Bank House Farm to the south. From this elevated aspect there are good views across the fields and stone roofs of the houses in the village and beyond to Silsden.

7.2 Open Space and Natural Elements of Character Zone 2

This part of the conservation area is characterised by late 19th/early 20th century residential developments around the Skipton-Keighley Road. These developments mainly take the form of long rows of terraced housing, densely constructed and notable for their lack of gardens and private space. Some properties, such as those along Queen Street and Mill Lane, are set back from the roadside behind small gardens. The yards around the later terraced houses along Queen Street, Beech Street and Croft Street tend to be hard surfaced, some containing a small stone outhouse. The gardens along Mill Lane are relatively generous, allowing residents to cultivate a green garden and are set behind attractive stone walls. Between 23 and 25 Mill Lane is an opening created to allow the ash wagon access to the rear of the houses, which allows a characterful glimpse of the small gardens behind.

The houses along School Street, Station Parade and parts of East Parade lack even a small yard to the front and the houses open straight out onto the pavement. The lack of open space is an important characteristic of these residential streets, creating a more built-up and urban feel. The car park at the bottom of Market Street is featureless and bland, further compounded by its prominent location to the south of the busy junction with Station Road and Skipton/Keighley Road.

To the east of the main school building is another small recreational ground. This ground, which appears to be used by the school, is predominately open, the boundary treatment being a combination of wire fencing, hedges and walls. Whilst it is relatively level immediately adjacent to Keighley Road, the field rises up steeply beyond the school, creating a dramatic rural landscape dissected by uneven stone walls and trees. Just beyond the brow of the hill the upper sections of the Jubilee Tower are visible. This area of open space is important to the setting and character of the conservation area as well as allowing atmospheric views into and out of the village.

On the south side of the Skipton Road is the car park behind ‘Burnzies’ transport café. Consideration needs to be given to how this space could be improved aesthetically, as at present it has a negative impact on the character of the conservation area. Careful use of screening around the boundary could greatly enhance this area.

To the east of Mill Lane is a small park with a curving path and modern metal seating. A number of semi-mature trees and shrubs are scattered attractively across the grass. The park is a fairly recent (late 20th century) creation on the site of the former mill dam that originally fronted the edge of the lane and fed the corn mill that once stood near Bridge House. The beck runs through the eastern side of the park at a slightly lower level, and being partially hidden by the greenery and foliage is not obviously visible until one is in close proximity to it.

7.3 Open Space and Natural Elements of Character Zone 3

To the north of Skipton Road and Corn Mill Bridge are the War Memorial Gardens. The central focus of this area is the war memorial, a tall and elegant cross set onto an ashlar stone plinth and inset with carved granite panels. Within the gardens there are many fine mature trees that enhance the setting of the memorial as well as creating a natural and attractive setting to this part of the conservation area. A curving path winds around the gardens, crossing the beck via an attractive wooden footbridge. The beck is set below the level of the bank in a stone-lined channel. Its reflective qualities and the sound of moving water compliment the tranquil atmosphere of the gardens.

To the north of the memorial gardens is St Stephen’s Road, a quiet unpaved lane with an almost rural feel. The church and church hall are both dominant buildings, slightly elevated above the lane and set within well-tended and grassy grounds. To the north of the church is High Hall, set behind a stone wall and a dense line of trees and shrubs. From the lane, very little can be seen of the historic gardens or indeed the house itself, other than the occasional intriguing glimpse through the trees. The abundance of greenery and mature trees along this lane provides a fine setting to the building, complementing the natural hues of the stone and adding quality to this part of the conservation area.

The cemetery, which is located in the northwestern corner of the conservation area, is a quiet and secluded spot, only accessible from the northern end of Elmsley Street. The boundary of the cemetery is marked by solid stone walls and a line of mainly evergreen trees. Once within the walls the cemetery is open and well tended, with views northwards across the valley. Paths bisect the cemetery and are lined with stone memorials, some dating from the mid-19th century. The dense screen of trees around the boundary creates a sense of seclusion and tranquillity.

The sense of spaciousness and greenery continues along Station Road as it approaches the northern boundary of the conservation area. The west side of the road, around Steeton Hall Gardens and the beck, is notable for the number of fine mature trees that create a natural and rural feel. Through the trees the modern housing development (Steeton Hall Gardens) and the nursing home are visible but their visual impact is minimised by the natural setting and greenery that surrounds them. Further north is Steeton Hall, which is set in its own extensive grounds and accessible along a curving driveway. The band of fine mature trees along the boundary of the property adds quality and a sense of seclusion to the area.

Immediately to the north is the Millennium Business Park car parking area. Despite its functional use, the car park and the buildings behind (which are outside of the conservation area boundary) are well screened by mature trees and hedges.

The houses along the east side of Station Road and Summerhill Lane are typical Victorian villas set in large gardens bounded by high stone walls. Tall trees stand in the gardens, screening some of the houses from view and complementing the buildings. These large and spacious gardens form an interesting contrast to the tiny hard surfaced yards to the front of the houses elsewhere in the conservation area.

8. Permeability and Streetscape

Summary of Permeability and Streetscape

The form, width and orientation of the streets and paths in the conservation area are important in distinguishing the character and sense of place of the area as well as allowing views and vistas throughout the conservation area.

8.1 Permeability and Streetscape in Character Zone 1

The road layout in this part of the conservation area is irregular, expressive of its organic development. The streets are relatively narrow, compounding the quaint, rural image of this part of the town.

High Street is a steep winding road that enters the village at the top of Old Bank (known as Hollins Bank Lane at this point) and runs down the valley side. Originally part of the old 1752/3 turnpike road between Keighley and Skipton, it is thought that the road predates this (as demonstrated by a number of properties built before this time) and may even have been loosely based upon the route of the Keighley to Glusburn Roman Road.

Many of the buildings immediately off High Street have been built at irregular angles to the road; several are gable end onto the street or at an oblique angle. Some buildings open straight onto the road, whilst others are set back behind stone walls or in short rows separated from the road by hard surfaced or grassy areas. High Street winds around the buildings, some of which jut out into the highway. This creates an interesting and organic streetscape, expressive of the 18th and 19th century development of the village.

To the south of High Street is Barrows Lane, which climbs up the steep hillside towards Whitely Head and Keighley. Alongside Woodland Mills the lane narrows between the gable end of the mill and the stone walls on the opposite side. The footpath ends here and the road narrows between stone walls, creating an enclosed feel.

Cartmell Lane to the northwest cuts along the edge of a grassy recreational ground, linking Barrows Lane with Chapel Road. Even though it is little more than an unmade track, it increases permeability and ease of movement through the area. There are good long distance views from the top of Barrows Lane and Cartmell Lane over to the church spire and beyond to Silsden.

8.2 Permeability and Streetscape in Character Zone 2

Character Zone 2 contains several terraces of late 19th/early 20th century housing, constructed in characteristic long rows or laid out in a grid format, typical of the planned Victorian approach to house building. These are an interesting contrast to the organic and irregular layout of the older 18th century properties on High Street.

Around School Street and Market Street the houses run to the foot of the steep hillside. Falcon Cliffe is set on the brow of this hill, the rear elevations facing onto the gable ends of School Street and Market Street. The narrow path that winds up the hillside from School Street to Falcon Cliffe increases the permeability of this area as well as creating interesting vistas between the buildings and spaces.

A small portion of High Street falls within Character Zone 2, due to the late 19th century terraces which front onto the roadside. The streetscape along this section of High Street is very different to the sections above and below. The hard straight line created by the stone frontages of the properties, set back a short distance from the highway behind stone walls or iron railings, is a contrast to the unusual angles and boundary treatments at the bottom of the hill and the open aspect of green fields to either side of the road at the top where High Street becomes Hollins Bank Lane.

The vistas created by the gable ends of Croft Street and Beech Street backing onto the frontage of the terraced houses along Queen Street creates an image reminiscent of Victorian Steeton. The small stone outbuildings and occasional line of washing to the front of houses along Queen Street enhances this image further. Forge View is an area of late 20th century housing which adds little to the character of the conservation area. The layout of the buildings in the form of a cul-de-sac hinders movement through the area and the lack of boundary treatment at the front of some of the houses further compounds the differences between traditional and new.

Along East Parade the long straight terrace of houses is enhanced by the wrought iron railings to the front, which separates public realm from private. The tiny yards between house and railings are generally hard surfaced and open, allowing unhindered views to the front of the dwellings. Ash Grove and Murton Grove run off at right angles to East Parade, the small areas of natural setts and kerbstones adding to the Victorian image of the place.

Low Fold, the small cluster of houses to the west of East Parade is a distinct contrast to the regular form of the Victorian terraces. Low Fold is an 18th century development that includes cottages and an old smithy clustered around a small courtyard. The access from Station Road skirts around 31 Station Road and views into and out of the courtyard are restricted, creating a quiet and secluded area.

8.3 Permeability and Streetscape in Character Zone 3

The streetscape in this part of the conservation area is characterised by buildings set well back from the roadside and within grounds enhanced by greenery and trees. Station Road runs north-south through the eastern portion of this area. It is a straight and generally wide road, which opens out and becomes more rural in character as it progresses away from the Skipton/Keighley Road junction. On the east side of Station Road is Summerhill Lane, a narrow unpaved track allowing access to the recreational grounds (outside of the conservation area) and the large early 20th century villas tucked away down this lane. The stone walls, trees and greenery to either side of the lane add a rural feel to the streetscape, though the impressive houses on the north side add another interesting dimension.

St Stephens Road is another unpaved lane that provides access to the church and High Hall as well as a number of residential properties. The lane ends in a cul-de-sac, with vistas to the north cut short by the coach house to High Hall that sits across the northern end of the road. This streetscape is also rural in character, the presence of the traditional cottages and abundance of greenery further enhancing this scene.

Ease of movement through this area is relatively poor, apart from along the main routes such as Station Road. Many of the other streets are cul-de-sacs, with large areas of private land hindering movement between the differing areas. Boundaries tend to be defined by either walls or railings though the use of natural elements, such as hedges is more prevalent here than elsewhere in the conservation area.

9. Activity

Summary of Activity

The conservation area boundary covers the heart of the village of Steeton, which though predominately residential, contains a number of commercial and non-residential buildings.

The physical form of the conservation area sets the stage for the activity that takes place within its confines, but the range of uses and level of activity is what brings the place to life. This is much harder to control, as it is in many ways influenced by market forces, however it does have a direct impact on the character of the area and ultimately on the changes to its built form.

9.1 Activity in Character Zone 1

This area is principally residential in character, the focus being around High Street. Prior to the construction of Skipton and Keighley Roads, High Street would have been the heart of the village, along which the main bulk of through traffic passed. A number of buildings along this road have historically been used for a variety of commercial uses, such as shops and inns, thought these have since been converted to residential use.

At the very western end of High Street are the Co-operative shop and the Soldiers and Sailors Club. These buildings are still in commercial use and add an interesting dimension to the streetscape.

The southwestern end of the conservation area formerly contained a concentration of industrial buildings. These buildings, which included three mills (Bobbin Mill, Woodlands Mil and Butterfly Mill, as well as the works on the corner of Cartmell Lane, are no longer in commercial use. Bobbin Mill was demolished in 1985 and Woodlands Mill is at present (July 2005) undergoing conversion to dwellings, as have the rest of the former industrial buildings in the conservation area.

This area would previously have had a very different character and activity level to that of today. The coming and going of workers’ as well as delivery of goods would have ensured the area was bustling and probably noisy. The atmosphere now is the very opposite. The industrial character has given way to a quieter and more domestic character, with little activity during the day.

9.2 Activity in Character Zone 2:

Though predominately characterised by long rows of terraced housing, this part of the conservation area does generate a considerable level of activity. Skipton/Keighley Road runs east west through the area and is by far the busiest road in the conservation area. Around the junction with Station Road are a number of commercial properties, including the two public houses, The Old Star and The Goats Head that add character and interest to this area. Both attract a fair amount of custom and their contribution to the activity in the area is considerable.

Burnzies transport café, with the substantial area of parking behind, is popular and appears to attract a lot of passing custom. Set in front of ‘Burnzies’ is a listed millstone, a historic reminder of early activity in the area.

At the southern end of Elmsley Street are a number of small shops, one of which is the village post-office. The post office has a rather dilapidated shop frontage and the newsagent next door has an abundance of corporate and commercial logos almost obscuring the shop windows. In order to enhance the character of the conservation area it is important that traditional shop frontages be retained where possible and their features enhanced. The use of corporate banners and canopies is not always appropriate in a historic area.


9.3 Activity within Character Zone 3:

The War Memorial gardens are a quiet oasis alongside the busy main road and provide an interest contrast in terms of levels of activity. Further up St Stephens Road is the church and its hall. These buildings add a civil dimension to the level of activity in the village as well as giving this part of the conservation area a religious identity.

Along Station Road there are a number of residential properties tucked away behind dense screens of trees and greenery. Steeton Hall, which is currently used as a hotel and restaurant, and Steeton Court, a nursing home, attracts a fair number of visitors by car. The secluded location of the buildings away from the road means that the level of activity they attract is not always apparent.

10. Conclusion: Character Specification and Guidance

To safeguard the special interest of an area, conservation area designation aims to protect and enhance the character and appearance of the place. Many features interact to form the unique qualities of Steeton conservation area, such as:

However, less physical features, such as the current uses of buildings and spaces, their condition, the amount of activity in the area and intangible ingredients such as sounds and smells are all factors in creating the identity of Steeton. This section highlights the elements that contribute to the character and appearance of the conservation area, summarising the information contained in the body of this document, and puts forwards policies that will provide the framework of the protection of these features. Owners and occupiers of sites within the conservation area, prospective developers and the Council should use this to determine what constitutes appropriate change and as a basis for the future management of the area. It should be read in conjunction with the policies set out in Bradford Unitary Development Plan (see Appendix 3).

Within the conservation area there are a variety of buildings, uses and architectural styles but there are a number of characteristics that are common to the entire conservation area.

Characteristics Common to the Entire Conservation Area

Common Characteristics Guidance
  • Topography and setting – Steeton is located on the south side of the Aire valley. In the 19th century development spread up the hillside to the south of the village and from this aspect there are good distant views of the village and church spire set against the green fields to the north. To the south and east of the conservation area the setting is rural and characterised by open fields bounded by dry stone walls.
  1. It is essential that the significant views and vistas into, out of and through the conservation area are respected in any development within the conservation area or affecting its setting. Applicants will be requested to provide evidence that this has been considered as part of the evaluation of the site (see Policy BH10 of Unitary Development Plan (UDP).
  2. New development that will impact the setting of the conservation area, as being either immediately within the vicinity or clearly visible from within its confines, should echo the principles of good design set out for new build and not over dominate its form or buildings and respect important areas of green space and woodland (see Policy BH7 of the UDP).
  • Traditional building materials – most of the buildings within the conservation area are constructed of local stone, which serves to unify the diverse forms and create a harmonious whole. Stone slate is the principal roofing material, with some blue slate evident on later buildings. Timber was traditionally used for window frames, doors and shop fronts, and cast iron for a small number of railings and gates.

  1. There should be a presumption in favour of retaining original materials, such as stone slate. Where the replacement of features is necessary and the traditional has survived this should be done on a like-for-like basis. Where features have been replaced by modern alternatives, the reinstatement of traditional style features constructed in traditional materials will be encouraged (see Policy BH7 of the UDP).
  2. Stone cleaning should be resisted where it would interfere with the uniformity of the colour of the stone, particularly in regard to terraced properties. Advice should be sought form the conservation team before cleaning any of the stone buildings of the conservation area (See Policy BH7 of the UDP).
  3. Repair and maintenance work to stone buildings within the conservation area (e.g. repointing, repairs to the roof, etc.) should be carried out in an appropriate manner. The conservation team can advise (see Policy BH7 of the UDP).
  4. Any new development should make use of quality materials that reflect the interest of the area and sit harmoniously with the existing fabric and respect the uniformity in the colour and texture of the built form of the conservation area (see Policy BH7 of the UDP).
  • Setted and flagged carriageways and footpaths. Only very small areas of setted highways and footpaths remain, however where they do exist they add much to the character of the conservation area.

  1. There should be a presumption in favour of preserving the setted and flagged surfaces of the conservation area (see Policy BH11 of Unitary Development Plan).
  • Boundary walls and iron railings – these are evident around many dwellings along High Street and surround the small gardens of the 19th century terraced housing. They define spaces and the line of the road and are an important characteristic of the conservation area.

  1. Existing boundary walls and iron railings should be retained and restored. Boundary walls constructed of stone that matches the existing should be incorporated into the design of any new development within the conservation area (see Policy BH9 of the Unitary Development Plan).

Architecture and building details

Character Zone 1: Concentrated within this area are some of the oldest buildings in the conservation area. Along High Street are a number of farmhouses and cottages built in the local vernacular style. Stone built and mostly roofed with stone slates, typical features include stone corniced chimneystacks, plain stone door and window surrounds, accommodating recessed mullioned timber windows, timber doors and squared timber gutters. Some also have prominent kneelers, dentil courses, stringcourses and quoins. Some are built directly onto the rear of the footpath or are set behind stone boundary walls. Despite being individually designed they have a pleasing uniformity that adds much to the character and image of the place.

The area formerly contained a number of industrial buildings, most of which have been demolished or converted to residential use. Woodlands Mill is a prominent building in this part of the conservation area which is undergoing conversion to dwellings.

Character Zone 2: This area is characterised by long terraces of 19th and early 20th century housing such as those along Mill Street or Queen Street. These houses are stone built with blue slate roofs, often with features such as arched fan lights above doors, dentil courses and small yards to the front are bounded by stone walls or iron railings.

The junction between Station Road and Skipton/Keighley Road is at the heart of this area. The two public houses add traditional character and the row of vernacular houses along the west side of station Road and Low Fold further compound this feel.

Character Zone 3: This area includes many interesting buildings including the two manorial halls, Steeton Hall and High Hall, both set in substantial gardens. The church and church hall are important buildings in the conservation area, the church spire creating a landmark visible from most places within the conservation area.

  1. There should be a presumption in favour of preserving all buildings within the conservation area that have been identified as contributing to the interest of the place. In addition, in any work carried out to the buildings, every effort should be made to ensure that the features that form an integral part of their design, including materials, proportions, windows, doors, shop fronts, stone details and timber details, or interesting features that testify to the evolution of the structures and are good quality in their own right, are preserved (see Policy BH9 of the Unitary Development Plan).
  2. The reinstatement of traditional features will be actively encouraged, but should be based on a historical understanding of the structure and where possible evidence of the original detail. Special attention should be paid to the design of new shop fronts: new shop fronts must demonstrate a high standard of design and be sympathetic in design and materials to the building on which they are situated (see Policy BH8 of the UDP).
  3. New development within the conservation area should reflect the predominant building form of the locality in which it is situated. This relates to height, scale and siting. It should not over dominate the existing fabric (see Policy BH7 of the Unitary Development Plan).

Open spaces

Character Zone 1: Most of the buildings are concentrated around High Street, though there are considerable areas of open space in this part of the conservation area. Woodlands Mill is set in a wooded clough at the top of Barrows Lane, and this area provides a green and natural setting along the southwestern boundary of the conservation area. The recreation grounds to the south of Chapel Lane provide an interesting contrast. The sloping land is open and for the main part green. The sloping land allows the houses around it to be viewed in context with each other as well allowing long distance views out of the conservation area. The areas of farmland around Bank House Farm and Hollins Bank Lane provide a green setting to the conservation area and again allow important views within and out of the conservation area.

Character Zone 2: This area is characterised by regularly laid out terraces of dwellings around which there is little private garden space. Some houses open straight onto the roadside while others are set back a short distance behind low walls or iron railings. At the centre of this area are the landscaped gardens standing on the site of the former malt house and corn mill. To the east of this are the recreational grounds used by the school. At this point the land rises up steeply and good views can be had of the rising fields and Victoria Tower (outside of the conservation area).

Character Zone 3: Within this area there is an abundance of greenery and open space, though most is privately owned. Both Steeton Hall and High Hall are set within substantial grounds and are well screened by mature trees. The cemetery in the northwest corner is a quiet and secluded haven. The largest area of public open space is provided by the Memorial Gardens, located to the north of Skipton Road. The beck runs through the middle of the gardens and adds much to the character of this part of the conservation area. The buildings along St Stephens Road and Station Road are, for the main part, set in spacious and green gardens, adding a dignified and leafy character to the feel of the area.

  1. There should be a presumption against building in open areas that have been identified as contributing the character of the conservation area (see Policy BH10 of the UDP).
  2. The identity of the spaces, where they have been identified as significant should be respected. This means that the treatment of the spaces should be preserved, in that green spaces should remain green and hard surfaced spaces should remain hard surfaced.

Streetscape and Permeability

Character Zone 1: High Street is an ancient route along which the village evolved. The buildings along High Street date from late 16th century, their age reflected in their organic and informal development along the line of the highway. The irregular form and location of the buildings, some of which are set an oblique angle to the road, adds interest to the streetscape as High Street climbs out of the conservation area. Barrows Lane is narrow and at times lacking a footpath, a reminder of the former industrial character of this part of the conservation area.

Character Zone 2: The straight narrow roads in this area are lined by terraced houses, creating an interesting contrast to the organic layout of the vernacular houses to the south. The streets are defined by the line of the houses, some of which open straight onto the pavement and others that are set behind small hard surfaced yards delineated by low stone walls or iron railings.

Character Zone 3: The large areas of open space around the buildings and roads ending in cul-de-sacs hinder movement through the area. The streetscapes have a rural feel, influenced by the unpaved road surfaces and abundance of mature trees and greenery.

(see 9)


Character Zone 1: Formerly the main route through the conservation area, High Street and Barrows Lane were once lined with commercial and industrial properties. Most of these have since been converted to residential use or demolished and the area has an overriding domestic character.

Character Zone 2: Mainly residential but some commercial properties along the busy Skipton/Keighley Roads, especially around the junction with Station Road, have a more urban character.

Character Zone 3: This area includes a number of non-residential properties, such as the church and Steeton Hall hotel. The setting of these buildings in substantial grounds gives the area a leafy and traditional village feel.

  1. There should be a presumption in favour of retaining retail and commercial functions along Skipton/Keighley Road in order to preserve and enhance its busy character.

11. Proposals

11.1 Conservation Area Boundary

The original (1980) conservation area designation includes the oldest parts of the village, such as the historic highway network, the 18th century built development along High Street and Chapel Lane, the two former manorial halls and the Victorian and early 20th century terraced houses. As part of a review of the conservation area boundary by the Conservation Team and an examination of every boundary amendment which was suggested by members of the community during consultation, the following extensions have been made to Steeton Conservation Area:

11.2 Enhancement Proposals

Naturally there are some elements of the conservation area that are not conducive to the predominant character of the village and do not contribute to an understanding of its historical development. These may detract from its character and appearance or may simply not contribute to it in a positive way. The following are proposals as to how the quality and identity of the place could be strengthened by the active co-operation of the Council, developers and the local community. The enhancement proposals are listed in order of priority (most important first) as identified by the members of the community who participated in the consultation in preparing this document.

Glossary of Architectural Terms

Architrave: The lowest part of the entablature. The term is also commonly used to describe a moulded surround to any opening, but is usually applied to a door or window opening.

Ashlar: Dressed stonework of any type, where the blocks have squared sides, carefully squared corners, and are laid in regular courses, usually with fine joints. The faces of the stones, called ashlars, are generally smooth and polished, but can be tooled or have a decorative treatment.

Broached: A tooling on the face of masonry which both levels off the surface of the stone, and provides a decorative effect, most often found on door sometimes on ashlar work, broaching consists of parallel grooves which run virtually the full length of the stone.

Capital: The crowning feature or head of a column or pilaster.

Chamfer: Narrow face created when stonework is cut at an angle, usually 45 degrees, but sometimes hollow (ie concave) or ovolo (convex).

Copingstone: Top course of a wall designed to prevent water penetrating into the core of the wall. Copes are often shaped i.e. half - round or saddle - backed, and can frequently be quite decorative.

Corbel: A projecting block which supports a parapet or beam. Often carved.

Cornice: In Classic Architecture the top, projecting, horizontal division, usually between two columns.

Cupola: Small dome-shaped roof structure crowning a roof or dome.

Dentil course: Rectangular projecting blocks (dentils), tightly spaced like teeth, usually below cornices (from Latin, Denticulus, a tooth).

Gable: The vertical part of the end wall of a building contained within the roof slope, usually triangular but can be any "roof" shape.

Hammer-dressed: Stonework, hammered to a projecting rock-faced finish, sometimes also known as bull-faced.

Hoodmould: Projecting moulding over an arch or lintel designed to throw off water, also known as dripstones.

Impost: Projection marking the point from which the arch springs from its support.

Jamb: The sides of a window or door opening.

Keystone: The large stone at the centre of the arch, often larger and decorated.

Kneeler: The sloping tabling which caps a gable and is upstanding above the plane of the roof and is usually moulded or carved.

Light: The framed part of a window opening. In a medieval timber framed building, a window would be formed by several lights separated by mullions.

Mullion: Upright member dividing the lights of a window.

Nave: The western limb of a church, where the congregation meets.

Pulvinated: A term applied to a frieze (pulvinated frieze) which has a convex section i.e. which bulges outwards.

Quoin: Stones larger or better shaped, than those of which a wall is composed, used to form the corners of walls or door and window openings. Laid in an arrangement of headers and stretchers on alternate courses, this gives strength to the build, and allows the facework of the walling to tooth into the corner.

Rubble walling: A term used to describe any build where the stones are not fully dressed. Can vary from stones which are wholly natural in shape to stones which have been roughly squared, can be completely random or coursed.

Sash: A form of window in which two sashes, separated by parting beads, slides within a frame, the case, counterbalanced by weights hung on ropes, the sashcords. The glazing slides in two parallel frames within the case, the upper sliding outward of the lower. The projection of the top sash beyond the bottom sash traps a certain amount of shadow which gives the sash and case window a very satisfying 3-D effect.

Setts: Square blocks, usually of granite but sometimes of hardwood for silence, forming a street surface. Setts were set on edge, close together, and they tapered slightly towards the bottom. Sides were never quite smooth, and laying them to achieve a tight joint, is a very skilful business.

Stucco: Originally an Italian plaster composed of gypsum, lime and some powdered marble. Slow setting and therefore easy to work, it sets very hard. During the 18th century, improvements were made to the mixture to allow it to be used on the exterior of buildings, latterly in imitation of stone.

Transept: In a cruciform church, the transepts form the arms of the cross.

Truss: Name given to rigid frame of principals and tie beams or collar beams.

Vernacular: An indigenous building constructed of locally available materials, to local detail, usually without the benefit of an architect. Somehow it is now taken to imply a fairly humble or practical origin, but this is not the case.

Vista: A distant view through or along an avenue or opening.

Voussoir: The radiating wedge-shaped blocks forming the arch.

Further Reading

Historical Resources

Margary, I D (1973) ‘Roman Roads in Britain’

Shearing, John (1981) ‘St Stephens Parish Church’

Stirk, Barrie (1963) The History of Steeton’, Bradford Libraries.

Architectural Terminology

Grieve, N (2005) ‘The Urban Conservation Glossary’

Planning Policy

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council (2005): ‘Bradford Unitary Development Plan’.

Department of the Environment (1990): ‘Planning Policy Guidance 15 (PPG 15) – Planning and Historic Environment’. – HMSO, London.


A full copy of the conservation area assessment is available to view in the Keighley Planning Office, Keighley Library and on the Council’s website at:

For further information please contact:

The Conservation Team
Department of Transportation, Design and Planning
The City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council
Jacobs Well, Bradford BD1 5RW
Tel. (01274) 432455

Appendix 1:

Map of Steeton Conservation Area

Appendix 2:

List Descriptions of the Listed Buildings in Steeton Conservation Area

NB: All listed buildings within Steeton Conservation Area are Listed Grade II

Woodlands Mill
Barrow's Lane

Worsted spinning mill c 1812 with late C19 alterations and additions. Built for Thomas Pearson and Sons. Coursed rubble with ashlar dressings and slate roofs. The original mill building now forms the centre of the complex, four storeys with a diminishing number of bays to each floor due to the slope of the site, the top floor nine bays, on the southwest front. At the rear an added combing shed. Attached to the southeast a later mill building added c 1860, five storeys and nine bays wide, with continuous cill bands, six pane glazing bar windows and a dentilated eaves band. At the northwest corner a small square turret rises above the roofline, topped by a pyramidal roof.

Beyond to the east, the new engine house and rope race. Attached to the northwest of the old mill, the old engine house and beyond at a higher level the weaving shed also c. 1860, single storey ten bays by ten bays with north light roof lighting. Attached to the southwest the blacksmiths and joiners shops. This block has a nine bay southeast front, with loading access to the west and a tall circular chimneystack projecting through the roof at the northeast corner. The southwest gable front, to the street, has three windows and a blocked taking-in door to each floor, with above a single plain sash in the gable. Beyond to the left the blank wall of the weaving shed and beyond the three storey office block adjoining the main entrance. The office has continuous cill bands and dentilated eaves band. To the right two bays with a single louvred opening, above a single window and above again two windows. To the left a two bay chamfered with a large ground floor access door with above two glazing bar windows, and above again two further windows. To the left again the remains of a former entrance arch which linked to the now demolished old and new warehouses. In 1847 the mill was purchased by John Clough of Keighley who expanded the works until the company failed 1939.

The Hob Hill
Green Road

House. Dated 1720 (rear) with alterations, and re-fronted, late C18 or early C19. Hammer-dressed stone, rendered to front, water-shot to rear, stone slate roof. 2 storeys, 7 bays. Plinth, raised quoins and window surrounds. 2nd and 3rd bays break forward and have quoined angles with ground-floor single, large, tripartite sashed window. Other tripartite window to ground floor of 1st bay. 4th bay has doorway with architrave, entablature and cornice. All other bays have sashed windows with plain stone surrounds and slightly projecting sills. Eaves band with cyma-moulded stone gutter. Two stacks to ridge, one of 4 coupled flues set between 1st and 2nd bays, the other to right gable.
Rear has 4 bays. 1st bay has C19 sash window with original small 12-paned sash over to 1st floor. 2nd bay has doorway with C19 monolithic jambs with original lintel with chamfered soffit bearing date and initials "H S" (Stirk family) in relief. Slightly to right tall 2-centred arched stair-window with Gothic glazing. 3rd bay retains original 2-light flat faced mullioned windows with plain stone surrounds and slightly recessed mullions to each floor. 16-paned sashes to ground floor, 12-paned sashes to 1st floor. 4th bay has C20 sashed windows. Gutter brackets.

Interior : Stair has simple turned balusters the risers treated as imposts. Archways with consoles to some doorways. Plaster mouldings decorated with egg-and-dart moulding and foliage.

Nos 14, 16 and 18/20
High Street

House, now 4 cottages. Mid C17, refronted c1710, converted to 4 cottages early C19. Rendered and pebble-dashed with ashlar dressings, stone slate roof. 2 storeys. 3-cell plan. 5 1st-floor windows. North entrance front : 3 bays of C18 windows with raised surrounds; 3 C19 doorways with monolithic jambs.
Central doorway has composite jambs and rebated chamfered surround, the lintel dated 1710 and initialed "WC" (William Currer). To the left, large inserted window and 2 smaller windows over with lintels and sills.

To left, coped gable with kneelers and well dressed stack decorated with 2 blind arches. One other stack to ridge. Rear has C17 fenestration: 3 double-chamfered mullioned windows to ground floor of 4-lights, 6-lights and 4-lights all under stepped hoodmould. All lack some mullions. 4-light window to centre of 1st floor. Single-storey dairy outshut to left end has mutilated mullioned window. Left hand return had 4-light window (partly buried by road) for cellar.

Interior : Service-end has 2 stop-chamfered spine beams with deep curve to one end which may be reused crucks. Parlour has fine stop-chamfered spine-beams and joists. Formerly a public house.

Milestone to front of No 10
Keighley Road

Milestone. Mid C19. Arch-headed stone overlaid with cast-iron, triangular in section. Letters in relief.
Top reads:

(Left face)     (Right face)
( )¼ MILES     3 MILES
21¾ MILES     4¾ MILES"

Nos 44 and 46 (Ingle Nook)
School Street

House, now 2 dwellings. Initialed and dated

" G "
(Edmund and Elizabeth Garforth).

Hammer-dressed stone, stone slate roof. 2 storeys. 2-cell lobby-entry plan, double-depth, with 3 1st-floor windows. Classical style. Quoins, moulded band. 3 bays of windows with architraves and projecting sills to both floors. Set between 1st and 2nd bay doorway with architrave, pulvinated frieze and cornice. Set above, decorative oval date plaque in rectangular niche. To left end, inserted C19 doorway (No 44) with monolithic jambs coped gable with kneelers. 2 stacks to ridge, both in ashlar with blind panelled arcades as at No 18 High Street (q.v.). It is probable that they were executed by the same mason.

Interior : House body has large basket-arched fireplace with voussoirs and keystone with ovolo-moulded edge. Set above is long oak lintel which appears to be part of re-used cruck blade which exhibits the halvings for collar and tie-beam and the notch for the ridge. Chamfered spine beams and floor joists with unusual triple-stop of 3 tapers. Fine king-post truss with octagonal stop-chamfered king-post braced to ridge. Six curved stop-chamfered struts support 6 chamfered purlins. The tie beam is some 30' in length. A house with extremely fine woodwork.

Steeton Hall or the Low Hall
Station Road

Large house, now hotel. Mid C19 but incorporating earlier C17 details, alterations and extensions dated 1904. Rendered and pebble-dashed walls, ashlar dressings. Welsh slate roof. 2 storeys. 3-bay symmetrical facade. Rusticated quoins, plinth, band, modillioned eaves cornice. Centre bay breaks forward and has quoined angles, Doric tetra style portico with decorative cast-iron grille set in parapet over, 2-light sashes with segmental-arched lintels to 1st floor and triangular pediment. Outer bays have single-light sashes with projecting sills carried on consoles with aprons and segmental-arched sashes above. Hipped roof with 3 stacks. Rear has 3 bays of arched windows to 1st floor and decorative carved heraldic shield initialed and dated " 1662 ". Attached to right, W G wing breaks forward with re-used C17 window under decorative hoodmould. Doorway with Doric pilasters and segmental pediment, the tympanum dated 1904. Right-hand return has 3 symmetrical bays of sashed windows, as front and projecting, angled, window to ground floor.

Interior: Main reception rooms have good doorcases, one with swan-neck pediment and shouldered architrave, others with pulvinated friezes and cornices; panelled doors with elaborate brass fittings. Plaster ceilings, one of Jacobean-style panelling with moulded ribs.

Nos 1 and 2
St Stephen’s Road

Pair of cottages. Early to mid C19, 2 builds. Hammer-dressed stone, stone slate roof. 2 storeys. No 2, the earliest cottage : 2-cell plan. Quoins. Central doorway with monolithic jambs. To either side, square windows with plain stone surrounds, those to 1st floor retaining 4-paned sashes. Gable stacks. To right No 1 has 2 bays. Doorway with monolithic jambs to left. 4-panes sashed windows with plain stone surrounds. Gable stack to right. Included for group value.

Steeton Hall Farm
St Stephen’s Road

House. Early C18 with mid C19 alteration. Hammer-dressed stone (painted with rendered gables), stone slate roof. Two storeys, 2 1st-floor windows. Quoins. Central doorway with monolithic jambs. To either side 2 bays of windows, that to 1st floor right is 2-light double-chamfered mullioned. Gable stack to left, one other stack (brick rendered). Rear has 2 bays of windows with plain stone surrounds. That to ground floor right of 3-lights with flat-faced recessed mullions. Included for group value.

The High Hall (Elmsley House or Upper Hall)
St Stephen’s Road

Large house. Initialed and dated HC/AC extended and altered 1921 by Godfrey L Clarke. AD/1674

Dressed stone, stone slate roof. 2 storeys. South entrance front : 5-bay symmetrical facade: 2 storey C17-style gabled porch (c1921) has basket arched doorway, heraldic shield and 3-light stepped window with recess for bell over. Coped gable with kneelers. Inner door has decorative iron straps. Two bays of wooden cruciform windows to either side. Two stacks with panelled arcades in the local style, (see No 18 High Street qv). Long range attached at right angles to rear preserves original double-chamfered mullioned windows with cavetto-moulded mullions to house body of 6-lights with 2-light fire-window under a single hoodmould. 4 bays of similar windows c1921 with projecting canted bay window. Three stacks to ridge. Rear of this range has similar windows and 2 semicircular-arched door ways to right of tall 5-light stair window with 3 transoms and stained glass heraldic motifs. Lateral stack with shaped sides.

Interior: Former house body has scarf-jointed spine beams, evidence of former bressumer and stopchamfered joists. Stair hall: oak-panelled; barley-sugar twist balusters to stair; original doorway with cyma-moulded surround and shaped and dated lintel. Matching door dated

(Keighley family). Other panelled rooms c1921.

Barn 12m north-east of the High Hall
St Stephen's Road

Barn or coach-house. Early C18 with mid C18 additions. Hammer-dressed stone, dressed quoins, stone slate roof. 2 storeys, 5 bays. Originally 3-bay symmetrical facade with projecting gabled bay having tall cart entry with shouldered lintel, a 3-light double-chamfered mullioned window above and a coped gable with kneelers and ball finials. Flanking are doorways with composite jambs with chamfered surrounds (that to left blocked). Outer bays have a 2-light window to each floor. All windows have latticed glazing. 2 bays added to left have matching windows and doorway with monolithic jambs. Coped gables with kneelers the gables surmounted by spiked finials.

Interior: 6-bay fish-bone king-post roof.

Walls and 2 entrance gate-piers including gates and railings to south-east of the High Hall
St Stephen's Road

Walls and 2 entrance gateways with railings and gates. C1921, contemporary with alterations to Hall (qv). Coursed rubble walls with copings of segmental section surmounted by square-sectioned wooden railings with moulded wooden ramped rail topped by iron-spikes. Ashlar gate-piers, square on plan, have plinths and moulded cornices surmounted by ball finials. Gates have semicircular-arch to centre and decorative iron strap hinges.

Church of St Stephen and attached wall and entrance gate-piers and gates
St Stephen's Road

Church. c1881 by TH and F Healey (Bradford). Hammer-dressed stone, Welsh slate roof. Early English style. Nave, chancel, south transept, north vestry, south porch, tower on south-east side of the church above organ to right (east) of south transept. Diagonal buttresses, coped gables with kneelers. Lancet windows. Principal feature is the 3 stage tower with broached spire with lucarnes to the cardinal faces. Third stage has 2-light arched belfry window with quatrefoil. Three-light east-window with geometrical tracery. Plinth under window continues to either side to form walls with chamfered coping surmounted by cast and wrought-iron railings with fleur-de-lis motif. 2 sets of gate-piers with octagonal pointed caps have matching gates.

Interior: 5-bay nave with waggon-roof retains stencil decoration, 5-bay panelled chancel. South transeptal chapel. Retains intact its original furnishings and its decorative scheme. Stained glass east-window of the Life of Christ by Powel Brothers, Leeds, in memory of Herbert Todd, Vicar of Kildwick. West window by Clayton and Bell c1913. Reredos designed by Godfrey L Clarke (architect, London) c1910 son of the then vicar. He also designed the alterations at the High Hall (qv) nearby. J Shearing; St Stephen's Parish Church Centenary Booklet, (1981).

St Stephen's Sunday School
St Stephen's Road

Sunday School. c1896 probably by T H and F Healey (Bradford) for John Clough (patron) of Hob Hill (QV). Hammer-dressed stone, Welsh slate roof. Single storey. Gothic Revival to complement St Stephen's Church with which it forms a group. Large main-hall with gabled entrance porch set in aisle on north side. Pointed-arched doorway.

Coped gable with kneelers. To right 3 gabled dormers, set in aisle with 3-light chamfered mullioned and transomed stepped-window. Coped gables to main hall with stack to right gable. At right angles a lower hall with 3-light stepped-window set in north gable. Left-hand return wall has large pointed-arched east-window of 5-lights with geometrical tracery. Gable surmounted by carved cross.

Interior: (Edmund and Elizabeth Garforth).r : 5-bay waggon-roof to main-hall with stage. Included for group value.

Appendix 3:

Legislation and Council Policies Relating to Conservation Areas

This is a brief summary of the legislation and policies relating to conservation areas at the time of the issue of this report. These will be subject to constant review.

Legislation to Protect the Character and Appearance of Conservation Areas

Conservation area designation intrinsically brings with it a certain number of additional controls to protect the existing character of the area:

Listed buildings, which usually form an integral part of a conservation area, area afforded more stringent protection. The Local Planning Authority must give listed building consent before any work that would affect the character or interest of the building can be carried out, be they internal or external alterations. Tight control restricts the nature of any alteration to which consent will be given.

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council’s Policies Concerning Conservation Areas

Structure, local and unitary development plans are the main vehicle that local authorities have to establish policies that can be utilised to protect the historic environment. The City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council has recently adopted its Unitary Development Plan (2005) which forms the basis of decision making on planning applications in the district. The UDP has the following policies relating to conservation areas:

Policy BH7: Development within or which would affect the setting of conservation areas

Development within or which would affect the setting of conservation areas will be expected to be of the highest standards of design and to preserve or enhance the character or appearance of the conservation area.

Policy BH8: Shop fronts in conservation areas

Within conservation areas proposals affecting existing shop fronts or proposals for new shop fronts must demonstrate a high standard of design and be sympathetic in scale, style and detail to the original building. Proposed external shutters sun blinds and canopies must be sympathetic in style, colour and materials to the buildings to which they are attached and their architectural style. Blinds will not be permitted on buildings without a shop front or fascia.

Policy BH9: Demolition within a conservation area

Within conservation areas, permission will not be granted for the demolition of buildings which make a positive contribution to the special architectural or historic interest of the area unless the development would result in benefits to the community that would justify the demolition.

Policy BH10: Open spaces within or adjacent to conservation areas

Planning permission for the development of important open areas of land or garden within or adjacent to a conservation area will not be granted if the land:

  1. Makes a significant contribution to the character of the conservation area.

  2. Provides an attractive setting for the buildings within it.

  3. Is important to the historical form and layout of the settlement.

  4. Affords the opportunity for vistas in or out of the conservation area which are historically or visually significant.

  5. Contains natural water features, tree and hedgerows which the development proposals propose to destroy.

Policy BH11: Space about buildings

Proposals maintaining traditional townscape within designated conservation areas will be favoured and consideration given to relaxing approved policies and standards if by doing so features of particular townscape merit under threat in the conservation area can be retained.

New developments seeking to integrate into an existing built form will be encouraged by relaxing approved policies and standards.

Policy BH12: Conservation area environment

Changes to the public realm within conservation areas must demonstrate that:

  1. The design, materials and layout of traffic management and parking areas minimise the adverse visual impact which may arise from such development.

  2. New and replacement street furniture is of an appropriate design and material that preserve or enhance the character of the surrounding street scene.

  3. Proposals for the introduction of public art will preserve or enhance the character or appearance of the conservation area. In certain conservation areas the introduction of public art and street furniture will be encouraged.

Policy BH13: Advertisements in conservation areas

Within conservation areas the council will require the design of advertisements to be of a high standard, therefore:

  1. Consent will be granted only where the proposal is in scale and character with the building on which it is located and with surrounding buildings. Where possible, all new shop fronts, fascias, signs and letters should be made of natural / sympathetic materials.

  2. Within conservation areas internally illuminated box signs will not be permitted. Sensitively designed fascias or signs incorporating individually illuminated mounted letters on a suitable background may be acceptable in town centres where the scale, colour, design and intensity of illumination would not detract from the character or appearance of the conservation area.

  3. Where unacceptable advertisements already exist in conservation areas, the council will where appropriate take discontinuance action to secure their removal.

In addition to these there are separate policies relating to the listed buildings within the confines of the conservation areas:

Policy BH1: Change of Use of Listed Buildings

Where possible the original use of a building should be retained or continued. Change of use will only be permitted where the applicant can demonstrate that the original use is no longer viable or appropriate and without an alternative use the building will be seriously at risk.

The Council will not grant planning permission for an alternative use unless it can be shown that:

  1. The alternative use is compatible with and ill preserve the character of the building and its setting.

  2. No other reasonable alternative exists which would safeguard the character of the building and its setting.

Policy BH2: Demolition of a Listed Building

The demolition of a listed building will only be allowed in exceptional circumstances. Before permission is granted for the demolition of a listed building, applicants will have to submit convincing evidence to show that:

  1. Every possible effort has been made to repair and restore the building and to continue the present or past use;

  2. It has been impossible to find a suitable viable alternative use for the buildings; and

  3. That there is clear evidence that redevelopment would produce substantial benefits for the community which would decisively outweigh the loss resulting from the building’s demolition.

Policy BH3: Archaeology Recording of Listed Buildings

Where alterations or demolition of a listed building would result in the loss of features of special interest, a programme of recording agreed with the Local Planning Authority and where appropriate, archaeological investigation will be required before the commencement of development.

Policy BH4: Conversion and Alteration of Listed Buildings

The alteration, extension or substantial demolition of listed buildings will only be permitted if it can be demonstrated that the proposal:

  1. Would not have any adverse effect upon the special architectural or historic interest of the building or its setting;

  2. Is appropriate in terms of design, scale, detailing and materials;

  3. Would minimise the loss of historic fabric of the building.

Policy BH4A: Setting of Listed Buildings

Proposals for development will not be permitted if they would harm the setting of a listed building.

Policy BH5: Shop Front Policy For Listed Buildings

Where possible existing traditional shopfronts should be retained and repaired. Proposals for the alteration of existing shop fronts or installation of new shop fronts on a listed building should be a high standard of design and respect the character and appearance of the listed building. External roller shutters will not be granted permission on a listed building shop front unless there is clear evidence of an original shutter housing and the shutter is traditionally detailed and in timber and/or metal of a traditional section.

Policy BH6: Display of Advertisements on Listed Buildings

Consent for the display of advertisements on listed buildings or which would affect the setting of a listed building will be permitted only where:

  1. The advertisement is appropriate in terms of its scale, design and materials and would not detract from the character or appearance of the buildings.

  2. The advert is not an internally illuminated box.

  3. If the proposed advertisement is to be externally illuminated, the design of the method of illumination would not detract from the character or appearance of the building.

  4. Plastic fascia signs whether or not illuminated will not be granted consent on a listed building.