Moor Pool Character Appraisal and Management Plan

At last the draft of the Moor Pool Character Appraisal has been released and a period of consultation started on the 10th January 2011 which will last for 6 weeks. This is a most important document. The designation of a conservation area which happened in 1970 is not an end in itself. The Council through the character appraisal should develop policies which clearly identify the features of the area that should be preserved or enhanced, and set out how this can be done. Using the character appraisal provides a clear assessment and definition of an area's interest and the action needed to protect it. The character appraisal should also help to generate awareness, and encourage local property owners to understand and take the right actions which support the area themselves.

Some of the means by which the Council can enhance the appearance of the Moor Pool Conservation Area are:
  • Preparing an audit or character appraisal of those buildings, structures and features which make the area special.
  • Preparing special Development Briefs for sites they identify as detracting from the character or appearance of the area.
  • Ensuring that new buildings harmonise with or complement their neighbours in scale, style and use of materials.
  • Making environmental improvements, for example by reinstating historic paving materials, sympathetic landscaping and planting, or removing unsightly elements such as hoardings.
  • Integrating road signs and markings as far as possible with the character of the street.
  • Controlling the position and design of advertisements and shop signs.
  • Ensuring that traffic safety and control measures harmonise with the landscape.
  • Making grants available for the repair of buildings.

    This list is by no means exhaustive and there are many details and issues which can be included. As such It is important that during the period of consultation the appraisal is carefully examined and we respond if we think it can be improved in any way. These documents are always very difficult to amend at a later date.

    The proposals in the Management Plan should address mid to long term strategy issues raised in the appraisal and designate actions to correct them. The Plan should also look at resources to support the maintenance of the conservation area, procedures to ensure consistent decision making, a mechanism for monitoring change and a development enforcement strategy.

    A detailed and well written plan will be a tool which enables local residents to better understand the nature of the Moor Pool conservation area and provide consistent decision making in the future. We would urge all residents to look at this document and either make representations directly to the Council or through the Moor Pool Residents Association (MRA) or Moor Pool Regeneration Group (MRG).

    If this document had been in place when it should have been several years ago, it is quite likely that instead of houses being approved for building on allotments, a strategy for their restoration and improvement would have been in place instead. Letís ensure the same thing doesnít happen again.

    Further information on Character Appraisals and Management Plans is available from the English Heritage website and guidance documents are available below.

    The Council are holding two consultation days at the Moor Pool Small Hall on the 19th January 10am until 2pm and the 20th January 2pm until 6pm. All residents should shortly be receiving a letter with details. The MRA would like to thank Mary Worsfold the Conservation Officer for the work she has put into this document and look forward to further discussions with her during the consultation process.

    From Birmingham City Council

    Character Appraisal and Management Plan Newletter

    Draft Character Appraisal and Management Plan

    Supporting Documentation from English Heritage

    Guidance on conservation area appraisals

    Guidance on the management of conservation areas)