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Heritage Statement to Review Development Potential on a Former Farm.

This report would both support a submission for Kirklees Council’s ‘call for sites’, but was primarily intended to inform the client’s decision-making process with regards to the future management of this site.

AB Heritage Limited was commissioned by our client to produce a Heritage Assessment of an area of former farm land and yard at Scissett, Huddersfield. 

The 3 hectare site presented in the main as fields, apart from a small grouping of converted residential buildings at the former farmyard. One of these buildings, the Barn at Lower Busker Farm, is a Grade II Listed former laithe house, dated to c. mid-17th Century.

Barn Setting as a focus for assessment

The AB Heritage report assessed the overall heritage significance of the Barn as an asset of Medium level of significance and used the setting of the Barn as a focal point to identify areas that would be less sensitive to potential future development.

AB Heritage’s report concluded that the different phases of the site’s history and the role of the Barn as the oldest part of the former farmyard group, would be best understood, experienced and appreciated from within the farmyard itself and possibly from within the building. As there was a loss of a functional connection and now limited visibility of the Barn from the surrounding fields,  this wider rural context made a reduced contribution to the overall heritage significance of this Listed Building.

A review of the surrounding fieldscape, assessed the views from the Top Field of the site as the most notable contribution to the way the overall heritage significance of the Barn could be understood. The views from Low Field did not feature the Listed Building at all and from the Middle Field these views are limited.

Maximising the site’s potential, whilst also protecting the heritage assets

In conclusion the Heritage Assessment showed that development on the Low Field would present the lowest heritage risk and provide an opportunity for a housing site, where a low density, low rise residential scheme could best be accommodated. With more sensitive, sustainable green design features, and an emphasis on preserving the key views towards the Listed Barn, housing on the Middle and Top Fields could also be a consideration. The final decision would be the preserve of the Local Planning Authority, but our clients were now furnished with a comprehensive heritage assessment which could be used to maximise the site’s potential, whilst also protecting the heritage assets as part of the mix