Manchester City Council

Sports, leisure & the Arts Northenden Conservation Area

Improvement and enhancement

Ford Lane and Boat Lane are no longer major highways, and this part of the conservation area forms a quiet backwater. Church Road and its continuation, Royle Green Road, is however a fairly busy road, and the vibration and pollution from the traffic has a damaging effect on the environment of the village.

One of the aims within the conservation area is to encourage the use of traditional styles of shop fronts, fascias, signs and other details which relate to the buildings and to each other. This does not mean that they all have to be identical, but designed within a common framework which enables them to comfortably belong to the village scene. In this respect, the older part of Northenden is relatively harmonious.

It is important that the narrow-fronted character of the older buildings is retained in any new development. This will ensure a vertical rhythm in the street wall when viewed in perspective. The height, scale, colour, form, massing and materials of new buildings and renewed parts of existing buildings should relate to existing retained high-quality buildings, and complement their character. 'Relate to' means having characteristics in common with, but not a copy, which would make no positive contribution to the character of the area. Each building should have a vitality of its own.

Most windows are of the sliding-sash type, and are vertically proportioned, i.e. taller than they are wide. In cases where they have deteriorated beyond repair, replacement windows should be set in the same plane and be of similar design and material to the originals. In new construction work, windows should be set back from the wall faces in order to create deep modelling on the facades.

There is a variety of building materials used in Northenden Village, such as slate, brick, stone, and brick with stone dressings. These solid, traditional materials should be used in preference to cladding, concrete, glass and plastic. Plastic may be used if it is limited to shop signs. Signs should be carefully designed so as not to compete with or conceal the the architectural details of buildings. Any security arrangement should not conflict with existing architectural detail and external solid roller shutters will not normally be permitted.

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