Sympathetic Development?

The Daniell Arms (now known as The Thomas Daniell) is a listed building. It was originally two mirror-image houses, and the two arched front doors remain, to convey this. The whole structure has a unity of classical proportion, and is constructed in ‘rubble’ stone – so very much toning-in with Truro.

It sits at the junction of Infirmary Hill with Falmouth Road, Lemon Street, Daniel Street and Strangways Terrace. The effect is of an informal ‘square, with Lander’s Monument and the Daniell providing a ‘gateway’ for travellers to and from the South.

With St John’s Church nearby, and both residences in Falmouth Road, Daniel Street and Strangways Terrace, with Lemon Villas, Southleigh and The Deanery, the Daniell forms part of a very distinctive characterful early C19th group that is a ‘grand entrance’ to Truro – a fitting introduction to the long sweep down Lemon Street.

One of the key characteristics of all these buildings is that they are elegant and simple in line and detail – attributes of their classical origins. Both Lander’s Monument and St John’s Church are significant civic structures which should be respected and allowed to sit within surroundings which are unspoiled and tranquil. How would it be if a funeral or wedding was intruded upon by Stormzy or Taylor Swift pumping out alfresco hits!

It is therefore with concern that we draw attention to the recent addition of a long green canvas awning attached to the full frontage of the listed Thomas Daniell. We can find no evidence of a planning application having been made to add such a feature. Listed Building consent is usually required for even very minor works, including replacement (like for like) of windows, rainwater goods and doors. So, one would expect an application to append an awning which radically alters the visual appearance of the building, and obscures several aspects and featured highlighted in the Listing Citation.

As well as the awning, we now have a series of picnic tables along the front terrace and earshot reports of ‘piped’ music playing quite loudly during opening hours. Apart from materially altering the visual quality of the building, the musack tends to detract from the quality of the surroundings – God knows what Richard Lander makes of Spotify!

We understand that local Cornwall Councillor, Rob Nolan, has reported the imposition of an awning to the CC Planning Enforcement Team. We must hope that, for once, this unpermitted distraction is not merely made subject to a ‘retrospective application’ but is required to be removed, and any impacts to the materials of the front elevation be made properly good.

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