Crowstone Conservation Area

The Crowstone Conservation Area was designated in 1990 and consists of

  • Crowstone House
  • The Leas, Westcliff (30-35 consec.)

View a map of the conservation area boundary

The History of Crowstone Conservation Area

As Southend expanded westwards, Westcliff developed as a new residential seaside resort. Westcliff-on-Sea Station was subsidised by local developers and opened in 1895. Over the next twenty years the area between the railway and the seafront was developed, mainly with new houses and visitor accommodation. The Leas Conservation Area includes the most prominent part of this development facing and close to the seafront but Crowstone Conservation Area, which is separated from The Leas by modern development, also has a similar character. Despite some subsequent redevelopment and alterations, the area retains much of the character of the original residential resort.

Crowstone House, the most prominent building in the conservation area was built in 1905 as a house but it was subsequently extended and converted to a ladies school by a Miss O’Meara in 1913. It is now a care home.

Crowstone’s Special Interest

Crowstone House with its prominent turret at the corner of Crowstone Avenue and Chalkwell Esplanade, is a fine example of Edwardian architecture and makes an important contribution to the historic townscape of the seafront. In 2008 the Council refused an application for the demolition and redevelopment of this building and this was upheld at appeal (ref APP/D1590/A/2110678) where the Planning Inspector recognised the building as having ‘considerable character and local importance’. Crowstone House has been designated a Locally Listed Building.

The remaining historic buildings provide the setting for this building and the link to The Leas Conservation Area nearby to the east.

Development in the Conservation Area

All development in the Conservation Area including alterations such as changing windows and roofing materials should follow guidance set out in the Design and Townscape Guide in particular Section 9 Historic Buildings.

It is always advisable to check with the Council if planning permission is needed before undertaking any works to the exterior of a property in the conservation area.

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