Fringe Box



Letter: Consider the Relative Height of St Mary’s When Considering Debenhams’ Replacement

Published on: 22 Nov, 2022
Updated on: 22 Nov, 2022

Sarah Sullivan’s sketch illustrates her claim that the proposed building fails to comply with the “25-degree rule”.

From: Sarah Sullivan

The images of the proposed St Mary’s Wharf building on the Debenhams site already published on The Guildford Dragon NEWS site do not give a balanced picture.

The 25-degree rule illustrated

They do not show the proposed development complying with the 25 Degree Rule – which it does not when you apply this rule to the Grade I listed St Mary’s Church.

25 Degree Test This test is to establish the effect a proposed building will have on existing properties with regards to obstructing daylight to existing windows/rooms. This test is carried out when the proposed building is opposite the existing building.

“A reference line is taken at 2m high on the existing building. This is the assumed position of the top of windows in the existing building. A 25 degree line is then drawn towards the proposed building. If the whole proposed development falls underneath the line drawn at 25 degrees, there is unlikely to be a detrimental effect to daylight on the existing property.” Source Designing for Daylight.

It is not too late until the fat lady sings and she is not even on the stage until tonight.

Historic England has objected to the demolition of the existing building along with the 20th Century Society.

Surely this reflects a similar scenario where we sought to tear down Victorian buildings until relatively recently. The 1960s Debenhams building, with its curves to the waterfront, relates well to John Brownrigg’s Yvonne Arnaud theatre, now Grade II listed.

Sketch showing the relative size of the proposed buildings with the existing Debenhams store.

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Responses to Letter: Consider the Relative Height of St Mary’s When Considering Debenhams’ Replacement

  1. Joe Taylor Reply

    November 22, 2022 at 2:30 pm

    From the mockups I have seen from the developer, St Mary’s appears to reside in-between the two proposed buildings, to the degree that it can be seen from Millmead.

    As it’s not directly opposite does the 25 degree test still apply?

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