Our proposals

Since the refusal of the previous application for the site Fragrance and the project team has considered the issues and concerns raised by Council members and residents and has sought to positively respond to these issues as part of the plans to breathe new life into the former Mineral Water Hospital.

Award-winning architects, Aaron Evans Architects, and Greenhalgh Landscape Architecture (Greenhalgh LA), both of whom are Bath-based, have been appointed to undertake a comprehensive review of the site and prepare revised proposals.

In support of a new hotel use for The Mineral Water Hospital:

A landmark, high-quality life-style hotel in a desirable location in the centre of Bath including 160 bedrooms, representing a reduction from the refused application.

A reduction in the scale of the proposed extension, which will ensure minimal impact on the amenity of neighbouring properties.

A sensitively designed garden area which will deliver an enhancement to biodiversity on the site as well as green walls and planted terracing on the proposed extension.

Significant public realm improvements on Upper Borough Walls and Parsonage Lane.

High-quality spa facilities accessible to guests and members of the public, including a mineral water pool, treatment rooms, themed spa bedrooms, a fitness studio, and changing facilities.

The creation of 120 full time jobs and investment of £35 million into the local economy and supply chain during construction and operation.

Providing managed public access as well as guided walks and tours to the two Roman mosaics discovered on the site.

You said, We did

We’re aware of the desire to see the former Royal Mineral Water Hospital preserved and restored sensitively. This section sets out some of the main issues which were raised with the previous application and outlines how our plans have been amended, where possible, to address these concerns.

You Said

The height, scale and massing of the extension is inappropriate

We did

The new design of the proposed extension is a smaller scale with four fewer bedrooms. The building mass has been reduced and redistributed and all but the essential plant has been removed from the rooftop enabling a reduction in the footprint, height, and mass of the proposed extension.

You Said

The proposals for the extension would not enhance the existing listed building

We did

We have appointed a new design team consisting of Aaron Evans Architects and Greenhalgh LA who have conducted a thorough assessment of the proposals following a contextual study of the site and surroundings.

The building form and design of the façades have been developed to respond to their individual settings and immediate context. The creation of a gable-ended, frontage building onto Parsonage Lane is typical of the Bath street pattern. A new ‘townhouse’ façade faces Bridewell Lane across the new courtyard garden and whilst contemporary, remain respectful in scale and character to the adjoining listed buildings.

As part of the new proposals, we have also removed the glazed ‘atrium’ link between the existing Royal Mineral Water Hospital building and the proposed extension. This enables the whole of the rear façade of the listed building to be revealed and seen from Parsonage Lane. This not only responds to the setting of the listed building but also creates usable open space for guests including external seating areas during periods of good weather, and a publicly accessible forecourt with interpretation panels and views through into the gardens beyond.

In addition, removing the glazed link creates a stronger visual connection with the courtyard garden and brings life and activity to Parsonage Lane.

You Said

Neighbouring properties on Parsonage Lane would suffer from overlooking and lack of light

We did

The extension has been redesigned to ensure that there are now no south-facing windows at upper floor levels, thus eliminating the possibility for any direct overlooking.

The new proposals have been carefully modelled within the wider site context resulting in the southern façade being reduced in length, stepped down and pulled back away from neighbouring properties on Parsonage Lane. This ensures that the proposed extension is now typically 4.7 metres further away from existing properties, ensuring the amenity and privacy of immediate site neighbours is respected.

Bedrooms on the Parsonage Lane boundary have also been designed to gather light from side-facing slot windows, ensuring that there is no direct visibility of adjoining properties.

The scheme has also been assessed by specialist consultants who have confirmed that the revised proposal is in full compliance with BRE guidance in respect of (i) the vertical sky component test; (ii) total annual sunlight and winter sunlight test; (iii) all gardens and open spaces meet the required guidance; and (iv) the daylight distribution test is met to all rooms within the adjacent existing residential apartments at Nos. 1-3 Parsonage Lane

 

You Said

Existing trees, open space and wildlife habitats would be lost

We did

Bath-based Greenhalgh LA has produced a comprehensive Landscape Strategy which outlines how the proposals will seek to enhance biodiversity throughout the site. The proposals for the site will seek to use the theme of water and will encapsulate many of the elements of a traditional Georgian courtyard garden. Further information on the landscape proposals for the site can be found below.

Our commitment to sustainability and biodiversity

We are aware of the concerns which were raised during the previous application process relating to biodiversity and planting on the site, and understand the initiatives being put in place in B&NES currently to tackle the declared climate emergency.

As such, our Landscape Strategy for the site has embedded the principles of sustainability and enhancing biodiversity at its core. The vision of the Mineral Water Hospital site is to provide a space within the city that ensures health and wellbeing. The hospital’s historic role of treatment and healing will be translated into elements of the landscape interventions.

The interventions will vary, based on the different character areas of the site, acknowledging the constraints and implementing the opportunities within each area.

The following proposals within the concept aim to achieve the following:

  • Increase biodiversity within the city
  • Improve air quality within the city
  • Improve the mental and physical wellbeing of hotel users and passers-by

The aim of the landscape proposals seek to reflect element of Georgian courtyard garden in a contemporary way, ensuring that the plans are in keeping with the context of the centre of Bath.

In addition to significant levels of shrub and grass planting, our proposals currently also include a reflective pool with flowing water, creating a sensory environment and sense of wellbeing, taking note from the treatments and healing carried out in the Mineral Water Hospital in years gone by.

We are also currently looking at the feasibility of introducing green roofs on the proposed extension and also retro-fitting the existing Mineral Water Hospital to boost the sustainability credentials of the site.