Blakebrook Conservation Area
Blakebrook Conservation Area was designated in 1993, and is based upon two groups of nineteenth century houses, and an area of open space, located within suburban Kidderminster.
The northern part of the Conservation Area includes a group of early to mid-nineteenth century villas, which lie facing either side of the road from which the Conservation Area takes its name. These properties were built individually or in pairs, for well-off inhabitants and are characterised by a polite formal style mixed with hints of the picturesque. Many properties have an Italianate feel. Specific design features include hipped roofs with low pitches and wide eaves; grey slates; rectangular chimney stacks surmounted by cylindrical chimney pots; walls of white washed stucco or red brick; vertically sliding sash windows with white frames and multiple glazing bars; and panelled front doors having fanlights and in some cases, classical surrounds. In terms of scale and proportion, the houses are quite large, have two storeys, and are generally lower than they are wide. This contrasts with the proportions of the window openings, which are taller than they are wide. Some of the houses have adjoining coach houses which retain their original doors and which may today be used as garages. Most of the houses have large front and rear gardens. The front gardens are generally separated from the pavement by low walls and some retain a curved lawn with a curved vehicular turning area. The front and rear gardens are generally well stocked with trees and hedges, which adds to their character. The garden trees are complemented by mature lime trees spaced along the roadside, in something of an avenue effect. Eight of the properties in Blakebrook are currently Listed as Grade II. A number of the other properties in Blakebrook were included in the pre-1980's listing classification as Grade III (Local Interest), underlying their interest.
The southern end of Blakebrook is marked by an area of open space known as The Green. This is triangular in shape, and comprises a grass lawn lined with mature lime trees. The Green forms a particularly attractive gateway feature at the southern end of the Conservation Area.
To the north of The Green, Blakebrook turns eastwards for a short distance and is lined with four detached houses, which date from the nineteenth and early twentieth century. These houses are constructed in a mixture of vernacular styles but sit relatively well together. All have front and rear gardens which are well stocked with trees and shrubs, adding to their character.
To the west of the Green is a straight terrace of thirteen houses known as Summer Place. This terrace was built around 1822 by the "Summer Place Society"; an early local land society established specifically for that purpose. The houses in Summer Place are modest compared with those in the main part of Blakebrook to the north but never-the-less, have a polite formal style which in part complements their grander neighbours. Their specific design features include pitched roofs with narrow eaves; grey slates; rectangular chimney stacks which extend from each party wall through the roof apex; stepped apexes following ground height; walls of red brick; vertically sliding sash windows with multiple glazing bars, projecting sills, and rusticated headers; and panelled front doors having semi-circular fanlights. In terms of scale and proportion, the houses have three storeys and are higher than they are wide. The window openings are also higher than they are wide. All of the houses in Summer Place have small front gardens and larger rear gardens, the latter bisected by a common access path. The front gardens are all separated from the pavement by low walls, some of which retain semi-circular coping and small gates. Some of the front gardens also retain hedges, adding to their character. The houses comprising Summer Place were formerly included in the pre-1980's listing classification as Grade III (Local Interest), underlying their interest.