Planning consent has been granted for the conversion of the historic Kelston Park main house into a landmark hotel. The proposals were carefully designed to retain protected bat roosts and their habitats in the surrounding historic landscape.
Kelston Park is a Grade II* listed 18th century parkland, laid out by Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown, with the main house a Grade II* Listed building.
The site is in a dramatic but sensitive location within the; Cotswold Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty; the landscape setting of the Bath World Heritage Site; and the Bristol/ Bath Green Belt. The site is also close to features associated with the Bath and Bradford-on-Avon Special Area of Conservation (SAC) for which bat roosts and habitats are a material matter for planning applications.
Our ecology surveys established that the house supports multiple bat roosts, including for Lesser Horseshoe and Greater Horseshoe bats
The development comprises comprehensive refurbishments of the listed building as part of the conversion to the new hotel use. Proposals also include enhancements to the landscape around the house. The restoration of the walled garden to a productive space will provide vegetables and flowers for the new hotel.
Throughout the project Nicholas Pearson Associates provided landscape and ecological consultancy services. Our work included historic landscape reporting, landscape design and ecology advice, surveys and assessment.
The ecology work was a critical element of the project and included habitat surveys, bat surveys and ecology assessment to provide crucial information for the planning application. Close liaison with the architect and lighting consultant was critical to developing the design, ensuring key features used by bats would be retained and that a sensitive, low level lighting design would be achieved. The landscape proposals included nature conservation enhancements which will provide opportunities for biodiversity within the walled garden.
Our collaborative approach to ecology and development, combined close team working with consultation with Bath and North East Somerset Council and Natural England. This critically enabled the proposals to retain the bat roosts and their habitats, and with respect to a Habitat Regulations Assessment, would not give rise to significant adverse effects to the SAC.