Latest planning applications submitted to Oxford City Council

PLANS to refurbish the bar at a riverside pub and to restore parts of a tower at Oxford Castle are among the latest applications submitted to Oxford City Council, the planning authority. There are also proposals to create six new one bed flats in Cowley.


Riverside pub could be refurbished


A planning application has been submitted for internal refurbishment and redecoration to the bar area at the Head of the River pub on Folly Bridge.

A design and access statement submitted as part of the application said: “This proposal seeks to improve an existing bar area and toilets and thereby create a more viable operation within the whole site.`

“The driver behind the proposal is to improve the amenity for existing customers and passing tourist and local trade.

“There can be no denying that this proposal will enhance and protect the building and add value and improve its viability for the future. There is no effect to the listed building on this site and its heritage assets.”

The Head of the River occupies the site of what was once Isaac King’s boatyard, the origins of which date to the 17th century.

Reference number: 22/02264/LBC

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An existing garage in Cowley could be demolished to make way for a new three-storey building.

George McHugh has submitted plans for the new building on Iffley Road, which would comprise of six new one bed flats.

A design and access statement prepared by Riach Architects on behalf of the applicant said: “The development is proposing a high-quality, sustainable apartment building comprising of six, one bedroom flats of similar size and layout.

“This development is a contemporary response to the adjacent Victorian building and Charles Street. The proposals also share some detailing with the Dorothy Wadham building opposite.

“The design and positioning of the apartments is integrated within a proposed landscape area which has both private and public areas creating a new link to the larger greener areas in Iffley Road.

“The proposal does not impact the privacy, daylight or sunlight of the existing building or neighbouring properties. Neither does it have an overbearing impact on its context.”

Proposals have been submitted for restoration and repairs to the fabric of the roof and upper parts of Debtors Tower, at Oxford Castle.

A statement submitted by Ridgeway Heritage Consultancy as part of the application said:

“The interior spaces of the Debtors Tower survive well, and retain much of the historic character of the eighteenth-century prison.

“They contribute importantly to the significance of the Tower, and to that of the wider Grade I listed group of historic buildings.

“Continuing water ingress at roof level within the tower has potential to result in a high level of harm to the historic fabric and significance of the building, and to threaten its structural integrity.

“A programme of repairs is therefore wholly necessary, and will enable the sustainable, long-term management and conservation of the tower and the preservation of its significance.

“The tower has been subject to programme of repair during the 20th century, including the inappropriate re-pointing of stonework joints with a cementitious mortar, resulting in the long-term deterioration of some areas of stonework, particularly within the upper levels of the tower.”

Historic England supported the application ‘on heritage grounds’ and recommended that clear details of the methods for the repairs are submitted upfront as part of the application.

The tower was built in 1790 to imprison debtors who owed money. A rare triangular stone staircase leads to four floors divided into cells, some with fireplaces. Prisoners remained in prison until they paid their debts and long stays were common.

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