De Beauvoir conservation area

The De Beauvoir central and south conservation areas were declared in 1971 and 1977 and extended to the north in 1998. The central area focuses on the De Beauvoir Square, the centrepiece of Richard Benyon De Beauvoir’s unique ‘new town’ development built from the 1830s.

De Beauvoir’s Town was the first large scale housing development built to a formal plan in Hackney. The square is included on the schedule of London Squares as being worthy of statutory protection. The houses were designed in the picturesque Tudor-cum-Jacobean style and exhibit a number of interesting features, such as shaped gables, sculptured chimneys and windows with lozenge-patterned leaded lights. The simpler style and scale of the buildings within the southern area, such as Benyon Cottages in Hertford Road, contrast with that of the square. These semi-detached houses date from 1839 and demonstrate an Italianate style as applied to modest early Victorian housing.

In order to preserve the features that give the conservation area its special character such as front garden walls, railings, door cases, original windows, decorative ridge tiles and the like, The Council has placed an Article 4 Direction in the De Beauvoir conservation area.

The Article 4 Direction was made on 7 July 2008 and was approved by the Secretary of State on 27 November 2008. This Article 4 Direction means that the following development will now require planning permission:

  • the enlargement, improvement or other alteration of a dwelling house including changes to windows, front doors, railings and other metalwork, plasterwork, doorcases or the like
  • the painting of the exterior of any building
  • the erection, construction, maintenance, improvement or alteration of a gate, fence, wall or other means of enclosure
  • the enlargement of a dwelling house consisting of an addition or alteration to its roof including the alteration or removal of chimneys and chimney pots
  • the erection or construction of a porch outside any external door of a dwelling house
  • the provision within the curtilage of a dwelling house of a hard surface for any purpose incidental to the enjoyment of the dwelling house as such
  • the installation, alteration or replacement of a satellite antenna on a dwelling house or within the curtilage of a dwelling house

Please note, not all of the properties within De Beauvoir conservation area are affected by the Article 4 Direction. To confirm if your property is within the Article 4 boundary, please search the Article 4 Property database.

Page updated on: 10 July 2020

Planning duty desk


Opening times

  • Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday – 9am to 5pm (telephone)
  • Wednesday – 9am to 4pm (telephone)