The Purpose of the Appraisal
Freshford and Sharpstone were recognised as having special architectural and historic interest and were designated as Conservation Areas in November 1975.
The Council has a duty to preserve and enhance the character and appearance of Conservation Areas, and to periodically reappraise the boundaries. This appraisal will be a material consideration in the determination of planning applications.
'Conservation Area Appraisals' give an overview of the history and development of an area and try to define what it is that makes them special. They also identify specific features which contribute towards their character, for example historic buildings, open spaces, significant views, natural elements and features which help make an area locally distinct. They may even include intangible qualities such as activities, sights and smells which are characteristic of a place. The documents also identify elements that could be improved.
The appraisal can be downloaded from the Documents section below.
Freshford and Sharpstone: summary of special interest
- The secluded location in the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
- The landscape setting within a valley, framed by hills and woodland
- The proximity of the River Frome as a landscape feature and formerly the power source for the wool mills
- The physical separation of Freshford and Sharpstone by the Tyning
- The close grain of the buildings, often hard on to the road
- Remnants of the industrial past, in particular Dunkirk Mill, Freshford Mill, and former weavers’ cottages
- The familiar landmark of the brewery chimney
- The variety of traditional building materials
- High rubble stone boundary walls
- The wide range of buildings of varying status within a small area
- Narrow, unmarked roads and rural verges
- The particular contribution of the natural landscape, trees and vegetation to the character of the area
Public support and involvement is essential to the successful management of Conservation Areas. Following the production of a first draft by Bath and North East Somerset Council, copies of this appraisal were provided for the parish council and local Members. A copy was posted onto the Council’s website and a press release sent to local papers. Six weeks were allowed for comments to be submitted, after which the final draft was completed. The Appraisal was endorsed by the Council on 5th March 2007.