Protecting the character and look of Harlow new town’s oldest neighbourhood - Mark Hall North

Published date

Residents in Mark Hall North are invited to have their say on proposals to enhance the protection of the conservation area’s character and features.

Mark Hall North has been a Conservation Area since 1987 because it was the first estate to be completed in Harlow and contains several unique housing styles and layouts. 

So, to protect the unique character of Mark Hall North, the council is now consulting on a document which contains a Character Appraisal and Management Proposals for Conservation Area. The Character Appraisal details the background of the area, including its history, dating from the original Mark Hall Manor to the building of the housing neighbourhood in the 1950s. The main purpose of the Appraisal is to provide details on the styles and original features of housing found in each estate in Mark Hall North and, importantly, to record examples of where changes have been made to the housing.

The council has 3 management proposals for the area:

  • The introduction of an Article 4 direction which would apply to houses in Mark Hall North
  • Minor amendments to the Conservation Area boundary
  • Publication of a management plan

Councillor Dan Swords, Deputy Leader of the Council and Portfolio Holder for Regeneration, said: 

“Mark Hall North is one of ten conservation areas in the town and was the first neighbourhood to completed as part of Harlow new town. When Harlow turned 40 the area was made a conservation area and as we celebrate the town’s 75th anniversary we want to continue preserving this area’s unique history and look at extra ways to protect its character and original features. 

“These extra protections mean that residents in Mark Hall North living in houses will have to apply for planning permission to make certain changes to their home. The changes will not be applied retrospectively and applying for planning permission for anything covered under the proposed Article 4 Direction would be free.  

“We welcome residents’ thoughts on these proposals which will be considered before we decide to move forward with these plans.” 

The council has written to all residents in Mark Hall North about the consultation and the document can be viewed online here or in Harlow Central Library, Mark Hall Library, Old Harlow Library and the Civic Centre during normal opening hours. The council’s website includes questions and answers on the proposed Article 4 Direction.

Any resident unable to access the document should contact the council. The most efficient way to provide comments is by emailing myharlow@harlow.gov.uk but residents can also write to: Forward Planning, Harlow Council, Civic Centre, Water Gardens, Harlow, CM20 1WG. 

The consultation closes at 5pm on Friday 26 August 2022. The council may not be able to consider comments received after the consultation closes.