Planning appeal over hotel lift is rejected.
AN inspector refused work to a listed building in Chester city centre intended to become part of a 19 bed boutique hotel.
The application for listed building consent was made by Michael Bartlett at 18 Nicholas Street.
The grade II property is part of a terrace dating from 1780 now on the inner ring road. Permission was refused and Mr Bartlett appealed.
Inspector Susan Ashworth said Mr Bartlett proposed to extend a lift shaft to provide access to the second floor at no 18.
The scheme involved demolishing the servants' staircase between the second and third floors and constructing a new staircase.
Planning permission and listed building consent for the hotel, to occupy part of no 16 and the whole of no 18, were granted last year.
The approved works included the installation of a lift from the basement to the first floor of the property at the rear of no 18.
It was proposed to remove a rear staircase between the second and third floors in order to accommodate a larger lift shaft that would allow access to the second floor.
The main issue was the effect of the works on the special architectural or historic interest and significance of the listed building the inspector believed.
She felt the importance of the building lay in its age, its architectural interest, particularly in connection with the leading 18th century architect Joseph Turner of Chester, as well as its historic value.
The terrace was an example of Georgian town houses and many original features had been retained externally.
She felt the staircase to be removed made 'a significant contribution' to its historical interest and would diminish the historic importance of the house.
Mr Bartlett pointed to listed buildings in London where consent had been granted but the inspector found the 'disruptive effect of the proposal' would fail to preserve the special architectural interest and significance of the listed building.
She concluded the public benefits of extending the lift did not outweigh the harm and dismissed the appeal.