Salisbury Cathedral Close Preservation Society


SCCPS News - May 2018

Planning Application - Christmas Market In The Close

Discussions have been going on since November 2017 abo ut splitting up and extending the Salisbury Christmas Market into The Cathedral Close. At that time, the Trustees of the Society raised several concerns/objections to this with Dean & Chapter which can be summarised as:

  1. Commercial intrusion into The Close, a reason why the Society has objected to planning applications in the past at Arundells and Mompesson House
  2. The scale of the commercial intrusion and its duration – since Dean & Chapter are talking of up to 50 stalls for up to six weeks, including set-up and dismantling
  3. (1) and (2) above run counter to the Society’s objects of preservation and protection of the nature of The Close
  4. Noise intrusion with the Market playing music, running generators,
  5. increased traffic, etc., in a predominantly residential area Increased traffic and traffic congestion, with set-up and dismantling, stocking and re-stocking and comings and goings of stall holders
  6. Damage to grass and trees in the churchyard, since the cabins will sit on the grass for about six weeks, in winter.

On 11th April, Planning Application 18/03096/FUL was registered with the Wiltshire planning authority for “Temporary change of use to hold a Christmas market over specified dates in 2018 only.” It is available from their website. Consultation on this expires on Thursday 24th May, with a target decision date of Wednesday 6th June.


The present proposal is stated to be for a temporary consent for 2018 only. However, as an integral part of the wider annual City centre Christmas market it is likely to assume permanent character. This will establish an unwelcome precedent that will permanently change the nature and character of the Close.


The Trustees have submitted comments and objections to the Planning Application. We repeated our previous concerns about destroying this island of tranquillity around the Cathedral and thus losing a unique asset of the City of Salisbury.

A key planning consideration is that the Christmas Market will be in the curtilage of the Cathedral, a Grade 1 listed building, and in The Salisbury conservation area. This requires the planning authority to “pay attention to preserving and enhancing the character and appearance of the conservation area.” Salisbury Cathedral Close is also a residential area unlike other Cathedrals. Exeter, Winchester, and Bath Abbey which are cited as examples of hosting Christmas markets are each in the heart of busy commercial areas. They are no sensible comparisons to Salisbury.
If you are minded to object to Planning Application 18/03096/FUL, the correct procedure is to write to
Development Management, Wiltshire Council,
Bourne Hill, Salisbury, SP1 3UZ
The case officer is Becky Jones.
Alternatively, you can submit your objection online on the Wiltshire Council planning website. (Link...)
The time limit for objections was
24 May 2018.


Link to the Society's complete submission

Link to the Society's second submission

Response to two supplementary applications
and Historic England.

Objection by Miss S. Eward, retired Librarian & Archivist of Salisbury Cathedral.

This planning application has proved hghly controversial. As of 05/06/18 there have been 96 submissions; the overwhelming majority of these are objections.


A new guide book to Salisbury Cathedral Close

Published by the Society

Guide Book Flyer

In Memoriam Brenda Theodora MacKechnie - Jarvis

We are sorry to report the death of Brenda Mackechnie-Jarvis, who died on August 20, 2017.

Together with her husband Charles they were founder members as well as committee members of the SCCPS. Both had a keen interest in the Close and lived at Number 9 for some years having previously lived in London where they brought up their family. They later moved from the Close to Milford Mill Road and enjoyed the extensive and beautiful garden.


During her time as member of the SCCPS Committee, she gave well considered opinions about the changes to traffic management proposed by the then Dean. She readily took on the administrative responsibilities of the Committe. Brenda was the most practical of people and always optimistic.

Her determination to maintain her fitness, particularly of walking, despite the pain and discomfort she experienced in doing so, reflected her positive view of life. She made countless cakes for many good causes as well as the SCCPS and was always ready to help and support those in need. She elected to join a small group of elderly people who were offered the chance of studying GSE Latin which she greatly enjoyed and continued to attend and contribute to the classes until very shortly before her death.







In Memoriam Ronald C H Briggs

The Society has been sad to learn of the death of Ronald Briggs on 28 December 2016. He was a founding member of its committee and played a very active role in promoting its early campaigns. Ronald served for a period as the Societ's Chairman. Long after his retirement from this role he continued as an active contributor.







At the October (2016) meeting of Trustees:

  • It was agreed to submit a response to Wiltshire Council concerning the Dean & Chapter's Revised Master Plan.
    Click this link to view the current draft response. (view...)
    Members are invited to contribute their comments to the SCCPS Trustees prior to submission.

    The revised master plan summary can be viewed via this link (view...)

    Alternatively you may wish to respond to Wiltshire Council yourself:

  • This year's Annual Lecture at The Bishops Palace on Thursday October 20th is sold out. Due to the strong interest negotiations are in train to run a repeat in early Spring.

last update 06/05/18

Guide Book Cover

Mrs MacKechnie - Jarvis
Mrs MacKechnie - Jarvis
September 2016


Ronald C H Briggs

View across Choristers Green