ADNP Policy HD7

Design in the Historic Centre

New development in the historic centre of Alnwick (including extensions, alterations and changes of use to existing buildings) will be supported if it adheres to the following design principles:

  1. Footprint: expected to respect the grain of Alnwick’s historic layout and to enhance the connectivity of the town’s historic pattern of pedestrian lanes and alleyways;
  2. Design: expected to make a positive contribution to local character and distinctiveness and help to reinforce a strong sense of place whilst not discouraging appropriate innovation;
  3. Quality: expected to match the quality of Alnwick’s historic townscape in design, materials, detailing and finishes;
  4. Use: expected to be appropriate to the historic area and to function well not just in the short term but over the life-time of the development;
  5. Size and scale: expected to respond to local character and history;
  6. Materials: expected to be sympathetic to the local materials that are traditional in the historic core;
  7. Landscape and open space: expected to enhance local character and distinctiveness and create attractive places to live, work or visit;
  8. Access and safety: expected to create a safe and accessible environment where crime and disorder does not undermine local quality of life and community;
  9. Existing guidelines: development expected to be in accordance with guidelines on shop fronts, stonework, windows and colours produced by Alnwick Civic Society in association with the former Alnwick District Council.


Ill-considered design
  • The shop-front should be considered as part of the whole building and should be sympathetic to its character, scale and design.
  • The design of the shop-front should respect the character of adjacent properties.
  • Where one shop occupies buildings of different styles, no attempt should be made to create a single, unified shop-front.
  • New designs should be appropriate to the character of the area.
  • Existing shop-fronts of good design should be retained, and repaired only with appropriate materials.
  • Out of character shop-fronts should be replaced with designs and materials which respect the traditional character of the building.
  • Windows and doors should normally be built in timber
  • The colour scheme for a shop-front should be dignified and harmonious.
  • Traditional designs are preferred, but contemporary designs may be acceptable where they respect traditional proportions and the scale and character of the surroundings.