Planning applications

University Plans – here's our press release

The Evening Post have asked us not to send this to others until after the holidays (because they plan to run a story) – anyone have ideas about where to send it then? Thanks.

20th December 2007
For immediate release
Contact: John Frenkel, 0117 924 0853

St Michael’s Hill plans are ‘ugly sister’, says local group.

Kingsdown Conservation Group say the University’s latest proposals would produce an Ugly Sister for the brutalist concrete Maternity hospital. Along with the Civic Society and several other local amenity groups, they are calling for revised plans.

Spokesperson John Frenkel said “The University proposes a building double the size of what was agreed by the City Council. The plans even ignore the University’s own design guidance about buildings which would ‘reinforce the character of the area…. help mend the streetscape …. be a positive response to the historic context.’”

“St Michael’s Hill is one of the delights of Bristol, and we were shocked by these proposals. They would spoil the historic environment with an ugly building that is far too big and completely out of place. We just don’t understand the University. They spent a year working with local residents and produced a Masterplan, which the Council adopted. Why bother to have a Masterplan and then try to ignore it?”

In November, the University publicly displayed the Phase 1 proposals, which directly conflict with the Masterplan in many ways. For example, the St Michael’s Hill building would be much too large and its design is unsympathetic. In place of the Masterplan’s four-storey building that steps down the hill in three blocks, they now propose a large horizontal office block, seven storeys high at one end. It could be any office block anywhere.

The University is trying to cram in far too much. Kingsdown Conservation Group calls for a revised design that sticks to the University’s own Masterplan.


Notes for editors:

1. The Bristol City Council Supplementary Planning Document 11 “Univeristy of Bristol Strategic Masterplan” is at
2. The Kingsdown Conservation Group’s response to the proposals is here: response to Uni Phase1.doc
3. The University’s proposals have not yet been submitted as a Planning Application. They were on public display at the Senate House in November.


Leave a Reply