Response to 124 Falcondale Road Planning Application

8 Southdown Road
Westbury on Trym
31 October 2023

Dear Planning Oficer

Planning Application 23/03923/F: 124 Falcondale Road

The Westbury on Trym Society does not normally comment on proposed house extensions, but this proposal has a number of adverse implications for the street scene and the local community which we wish to draw to your attention, located as it would be on the prominent corner of Canford Road and Falcondale Road.

Loss of Open Area

We were surprised to see that the agent has stated that the applicant owns the site. This cannot be correct. The attached plan from Bristol City Council’s website, showing the council’s property ownership in the area, shows that the path which abuts the curtilage of 124 Falcondale Road belongs to the council. We understand that this is adopted highway, which would require Stopping Up for the development to proceed. We object to the loss of this path, as it would take pedestrians turning this corner close to the busy junction of Canford Road and Falcondale Road.

We would have expected the grass area which forms the remainder of the site to have been in public ownership. That may not be the case, but it is a public amenity and we understand that the Parks department continues to maintain it. It used to have two mature trees on it, which still appear on Google Streetview, but have been cut down in recent years. This is an open corner at the signalised junction of two busy roads and the enclosure of it will have a significant adverse impact on the public realm, even though the grassed area may be in private ownership, as this will be lost. Many pedestrians cross the area of grass to keep away from the busy roads when crossing the end of Canford Road.

Road Safety

Currently when approaching the junction from Canford Road or Falcondale Road going north, there is good visibility of the joining road. The stop line for the traffic signals at the end of Canford Road is some way back, so the proposed new boundary would obscure views of traffic heading north on Falcondale Road. In normal circumstances this may not be an issue, but Falcondale Road (A4018) is used by many emergency service vehicles that need to cross red lights and pedestrians using the crossing will not be able to see vehicles turning left into Canford Road from Falcondale Road. In these circumstances the lack of visibility could lead to serious accidents.

Effect of the Buildings on the Character of the Area

The development proposed involves the provision of sheds and a carport on what is currently footway and grassed area. The drawings show this development partially obscured behind planting. The car port extends in front of the building line further south on Falcondale Road and has a higher roof than the large shed to which it is attached. The drawings show the buildings largely hidden by planting, but this will not be the case as the immediate effect of the development will be to remove the present boundary wall with vegetation (a leylandii hedge) above. It will stand out very prominently in the street scene even after the planting has matured as the proposed new buildings will be at the highest part of this site which slopes down to the road junction – the new boundary will be at the lowest part of the site. In any event development should not rely on being hidden by planting as its long term future can never be assured. We note the proposed green roof and cedar cladding, in an attempt to mute the impact, but this does not overcome the concerns we have in respect of its harm to the character of the area and again green roofs will not last unless they are well maintained.

The submitted plans are not helpful. The two plans showing existing and proposed views from Canford Road and Falcondale Road are at an inappropriate scale and do not show the existing house, making the proposed development look insignificant, which given the height of 3 metres for the shed and 3.3 metres for the car port, they will not be.


In our view, the proposals are contrary to planning policies DM26: Local Character and Distinctiveness, DM27: Layout and Form, especially those relating to Streets and Spaces, DM 28 Public Realm and DM 30: Alterations to Existing Buildings and should be refused. Furthermore, due to its impact on movement we consider it to be contrary to policy DM 23: Transport Development Management.

Yours sincerely

A C Renshaw MRTPI
For the Westbury on Trym Society