PEOPLE can give their views on how the special character of one of Leicester’s 25 designated conservation areas should be preserved or enhanced.
Leicester City Council has launched a public consultation inviting comments on a new draft character appraisal and management plan for the Knighton Village conservation area.
The Knighton Village Conservation Area was first designated in 1975 to cover the historic core of the former village of Knighton.
Its existing boundaries cover an area of about 37 acres, extending south from Knighton Road to the Saffron Brook, through Church Lane and part of Brinsmead Road to the west, and a stretch of Carisbrook Road to the east.
The city council is proposing to extend the existing conservation area to include suburban housing on Chapel Lane, Gulliver Street and Craighall Road, and on Knighton Road and Ratcliffe Road, as well as a small piece of land south of the Saffron Brook.
Stricter planning controls are also proposed through the introduction of an Article 4 Direction. This will give the council more powers to help protect the distinctive character of properties in the area.
The Knighton Village Conservation Area includes a number of landmark buildings of historical interest, These include the Grade II-listed Church of St Mary Magdalen, parts of which were built in the 13th century; the Grade-II listed former halls of residence at College Court which stand as a fine example of 1960s architecture; and the Grade-II listed, traditionally thatched Oram Cottage on Church Lane, which dates to the 17th century.
Other significant assets within the area include the Grade-II listed Knighton Hall and the Attenborough Arboretum which it overlooks, along with the Craddock Arms public house, named after Edmund Craddock who was a major landowner in the area in the 1720s an which still features a thatched roof.
The area also features many well-designed suburban houses which date to the early decades of the 20th century adding to its rich architectural tapestry.
Conservation areas are parts of the city that have special historic interest or architectural qualities that deserve to be preserved and enhanced. There are currently 25 designated conservation areas in Leicester.
Cllr Adam Clarke, deputy city mayor and city council heritage champion, said: “The Knighton Village Conservation Area tells a fascinating chapter in the story of Leicester, particularly around the development of our suburbs. Along with its many fine historical buildings, it boasts a a beautiful arboretum which plays an important part in enhancing the city’s biodiversity.”
“By reviewing the character and management of this conservation area, we can help ensure its unique character and architectural heritage continues to be protected for future generations.”
People can comment on the proposals by visiting www.leicester.gov.uk/consultations
A public drop-in event will also be held on Thursday 25 January, from 5-8pm, at Knighton Victoria Bowls Club, Church Lane, where people can find out more. Council staff will be available to answer questions and there will be a presentation from 6pm.
The consultation runs until Thursday 22 February.