A RETROSPECTIVE application to remove much of the roof of a Conservation Area building and build a dormer in its place.

Haworth is famous for being the former home of the Bronte sisters, as well as its cobbled streets and heritage buildings.

Its history has led to much of the town being designated a Conservation Area - meaning its buildings are protected from any works that would alter their traditional appearance.

In April, during lockdown, work started on the roof of 69 Main Street, a Grade II listed building in the Conservation Area.

Retrospective plan to turn pub in city centre conservation area into shop and flats is refused

After several complaints to Bradford Council, a retrospective planning application for the works were submitted by Paul Taylor.

It said the works were part of plans to turn the upper floors of the building, which is a cafe, into flats.

The application pointed out that a neighbouring building also had a dormer window, and added: “We believe the dormer window will comply with the council’s house extension policy and not unduly harm the Conservation Area.”

However, officers at Bradford Council disagreed, and the plans have been refused.

Although they did not object to upper floors being converted to residential use - the unauthorised works to the roof led to the refusal.

Officers pointed out that while the neighbouring building does have a dormer window, this was installed before Haworth became a Conservation Area. Repeating the feature in the town’s other listed buildings would set an unacceptable precedent.

Conservation officer Jon Ackroyd said: “The dormer has resulted in the loss of most of the roof, and is wholly incongruous.

“Although a dormer exists on the neighbouring property, this in no way sets a precedent, being equally incongruous but significantly also present prior to listing.

“There is no public benefit associated with the dormer.

“The proposed alterations to the building would not maintain its significance and would cause harm to it and the conservation area.”

Refusing the plans, officers said: “Although a dormer exists on the neighbouring property, this in no way sets a precedent for accepting further detrimental change to heritage. The adjoining dormer is equally as incongruous but, significantly, the Conservation Officer thinks it was present on the building prior to the listing.

“The addition of incongruous dormer window enlargement to the rear elevation would cause significant detriment of the character and appearance of the host property, the setting of listed buildings and the Haworth Conservation Area within which the property is located.”

Haworth, Cross Roads & Stanbury Parish Council had also raised concerns about the plans.

The Council also refused to grant listed building consent for the works for similar reasons.