Residents win victory over controversial window in Golden Lion Bank conversion in Whitby

Whitby residents have won a victory over plans to install a large glass window in a flat overlooking the town’s historic harbour.

By Carl Gavaghan, Local Democracy Reporting Service
Monday, 16th December 2019, 10:54 am
Updated Monday, 16th December 2019, 11:07 am

HSR Developments applied earlier this year to Scarborough Council to convert the top four floors of 2 Golden Lion Bank into apartments.

As part of the plans, the top floor of the building was to include a “feature window” which would have looked out on to Whitby’s Swing Bridge.

The proposed change to the building, which is located nearby to other listed properties did go down well, however.

The Golden Lion Bank building seen, centre, with The Magpie's Kitchen shop on the bottom floor. Picture from Google.

Whitby Civic Society objected, saying: “The property is in the conservation area, and is adjacent to two Grade II listed buildings.

“The planning authority is under a statutory duty to preserve and enhance the character of the area and this application does not address this requirement.

In particular, the scale and design of the window in the front gable is incongruous and would detract from the existing street scene, and we believe that permission should be refused.”

Scarborough Council’s own conservation officer Stephen Gandolfi also objected, stating that while he has no issue with the change of use of the building the “completely alien” window would detract from the conservation area.

Taken from the planning application showing the now removed window on the top floor.

In total, a dozen objections were lodged with the council, many worried that the window would ruin the look of the building, which started life as a warehouse.

Scarborough Council planning officers have now approved the plans for the building, but only after the feature window was dropped.

The report into the decision notes: “The picture window originally proposed at the fourth-floor level has been removed from the scheme and the original window opening retained.

“This alteration raised objections and the retention of the original windows is considered to be acceptable as it ensures that the original architectural appearance of the building is maintained.”

The shop on the ground floor of the building is unaffected by the planning application.