Revolt against plans for newbuild home between two Highgate period houses

Highgate residents are protesting against plans for a large home to be built between mansions of “great distinction”.

There is currently a low garage between two period houses at 28 and 30 Southwood Lawn Road, allowing passers-by a beautiful vista over east London, with Epping Forest on the horizon.

Architects RCKa, for L&Q Housing Association, want to build a three-storey house – taking advantage of the gap between the houses in the Highgate Conservation Area.

The firm plans to create a modern house with large bay windows and an intricate contemporary brick pattern, inspired by the period houses on either side.

Highgate Village neighbours say the designs are out of character with the mansions on either side, built between 1895 and 1914.

Neighbour Peter Walton wrote: “The adjacent houses on the same road form a significant architectural group of great distinction, and the space between the houses is essential to the integrity of the design.

“There is also an important view between number 30 and the next house, providing light into gardens and a view of Highgate Avenue at the bottom of the hill.

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“To build in the space between these two fine houses would diminish them both, destroy the view which can be enjoyed by any passer-by, and crowd the streetscape in an unnecessary way.”

Lawyer Gurion Taussig said it would “destroy the characteristic aesthetic of the two villas by placing an incongruous modern structure between them. The villas will simply not be able for the viewer to appreciate together, as a single example of creative late Victorian building”.

An RCKa spokesman said: “Any new development can be concerning for the local community, however, we consider the scheme to be appropriate, carefully designed, and compliant with planning policy... These concerns have been addressed in the design and we have provided the planning team with a detailed response to each of the comments.”