Knolle Park House is a Grade 2 listed mansion house in extensive grounds in South Liverpool. The site had over the years become a convent and Children’s Home with an array of modern annexes and buildings across the former estate. Following closure of the Children’s Home and collapse of a scheme for a Care Village, the future of the sensitive site and its heritage buildings became extremely uncertain. Redevelopment would have to contend with serious planning policy constraints and very deep local concerns about loss of green space in an area under acute development pressure.
Working with specialist architectural practice Bridge Architects we set out to devise a consultation and engagement process that was proactive and inclusive. Critically we needed to differentiate this scheme from numerous speculative housing projects that had provoked local opposition. Working with Bridge and their developer client, we developed a visual identity and creative style for the project that emphasised the strong conservation and sustainability values underpinning the project combined with its striking modern architectural element. Knolle Park not only set out to restore the site’s outstanding heritage buildings but deliver the city’s first new build housing that would meet Passivhaus standard.
A series of face to face meetings with civic, conservation and campaign groups, Ward Councillors and a local public exhibition helped us to build strong community support for the Knolle Park development project. A positive Statement of Community Engagement was submitted with the planning application and a helped secure a successful planning outcome.