The proposed development site lies within agricultural land which is mostly pasture, but historically was part of the Forest of Bere. The historic environment information will be collected for an area approximately 500m beyond the development’s boundary; additional data will be collected across a wider area for designated features (e.g. Scheduled Ancient Monuments (SAMs) and conservation areas) in conjunction with the visual envelope defined by the Landscape and Visual Assessment Chapter.
Staunton Country Park is Grade II* listed on The Register of Parks and Gardens, with many of the buildings of historical interest and registered on the Sites and Monuments Record. Some of the buildings within the park are listed (e.g. The Bothy, Grade II and the Chinese Bridge, Grade II). Part of the park, notably The Avenue is also designated as a conservation area, which stretches northwards from the core of the park; parts of The Avenue would be removed as a result of the development proposals. Thus the assessment of any impacts on cultural heritage is an important part of the review process.
The construction of the proposed development has the potential to affect archaeological and cultural heritage aspects present on and around the site. These issues will be identified and quantified in full within the Environmental Statement. Archaeology and cultural heritage comprises three elements:
- built heritage; and
- historic landscape
Existing sources which are being consulted include:
- Hampshire County Council Historic Environment Record;
- Listed building data resourced from English Heritage, Havant Borough Council (HBC) and East Hampshire District Council (EHDC), with locally listed buildings also held at HBC and EHDC;
- Local history archives, as appropriate, for background information about the history and development of the area; and
- Historic cartographic sources which will be reviewed to understand the development of the landscape
In addition, a review of available aerial photographs will be undertaken to consider the potential for below ground archaeological features and to assist in the understanding of past land use and truncation.
A qualitative assessment of archaeological remains, built heritage and historic landscape features will be undertaken based on a combination of:
- Professional judgment;
- Existing designations and local and county planning policies;
- The Institute for Archaeologists: Standards and Guidance;
- Other relevant policy and guidance documents identified during initial baseline collection which will be consulted and reviewed;
- The level of information relating to historic feature(s), e.g. form, date, period, fragility;
- The nature/scale and severity of the construction/operational impact;
- The potential for the survival of deposits;
- The potential for effective and appropriate mitigation; and
- Consideration of whether effects will be temporary or permanent, direct, indirect and cumulative
The assessment will conform to the principles and objectives of PPGs 15 (Planning and the Historic Environment) and 16 (Archaeology and Planning).
Consultation is being undertaken with the following:
- English Heritage (EH) historic landscape advisor;
- Hampshire County Council (HCC) archaeological officer and historic landscape officer;
- Local planning authorities
Further information on how these issues are being assessed is set out in section 5.7 of the Environmental Impact Assessment Scoping Report.