Low-Carbon Bath commended in RTPI regional awards

... and we’re still in the running for a national prize

25 November 2011

We're delighted to report that our Low-Carbon Bath project has been commended in the South West regional section of the Royal Town Planning Institute's 2011 National Planning Awards.

Low-Carbon Bath was a ground-breaking initiative, run in partnership with the Bath Preservation Trust, which engaged the local community in the planning process in the unique and sensitive context of a world heritage site.

It asked the question 'how far can we go in adapting Bath's exceptional architectural legacy to make its homes fit for a low-carbon future?'. This is a subject on which most people in Bath have strong views – so was a consensus achievable?

'Listed' shouldn't mean 'cold'

A range of consultations with different sections of Bath's population demonstrated a surprising amount of agreement. 'Yes, we love the city's heritage, but we also want homes that aren't cold and don't cost an arm and a leg to heat,' was the general sentiment.

Rachel Coxcoon presented the project to the RTPI judges. "I think they were impressed by the manner in which, through this process, so many people became engaged with planning issues and understood how planning affects them personally."

Another output of the project which can't have failed to impress is 'Warmer Bath' a guide to improving the energy efficiency of Bath's traditional homes (i.e. 18th and 19th-century houses that are both hard to heat and subject to quite stringent planning regulations). This document has been so well-received that Bath & North East Somerset Council is now developing a Supplementary Planning Document based on it, confident that it has the broad support of the people of the city.

"It's a feather in our cap, and we are very pleased indeed," added Rachel. "And we're still in the running for a national award, for which we’re shortlisted (with 33 others), so watch this space."

Low-Carbon Bath is a part of CSE’s PlanLoCaL project. For PlanLoCaL we made this short film (6mins) about planning applications in relation to listed buildings, heritage and landscape.

Photo by Andrew C E Dent reproduced under creative commons

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