Yarborough Road Character Area lies to the west of Lincoln’s historic core and spans almost the full height of the north escarpment slope. The Character Area is dominated by large-scale, individually styled Late Victorian/Edwardian buildings, which benefit from extensive views off the escarpment slope as well as a close location to the city centre. Late Victorian/Edwardian properties originally formed part of a high-status suburb within easy reach of the city centre. Small, contained areas of later infill and redevelopment are located within the area.
The changing gradient of the escarpment slope strongly influences many elements of the urban form, such as the size of housing plots, accessibility, road layout, the aspect of buildings, and the rhythm of buildings up and down the escarpment slope. There is a low building density throughout much of the area, possibly because of the problematic steepness of the escarpment slope, as well as the generally large scale of buildings set in spacious plots.
Yarborough Road and The Avenue are the dominant roads in the Character Area, and form part of an inner ring road that carries traffic connecting radial roads entering the north of the city with Carholme Road, Long Leys Road and Newland in the west. A small number of individual or groups of properties in the area are accessed along narrow tracks or driveways, such as the houses to the west of the roundabout in the north of the area, and numbers 38, 41 and 42 Long Leys Road.
The area is composed of small to medium sized urban blocks, many of which extend outside of the area, forming part of a grid pattern of mostly Late Victorian/Edwardian streets and houses to the north and south. Several urban blocks are partially defined by footpaths, meaning access is comparatively more difficult than for pedestrians.
Late Victorian/Edwardian properties in the Character Area consist of large-scale properties, mainly located on the upper parts of the escarpment slope as well as West Parade and The Avenue, and some short rows of terraced houses. Despite the varying scale and form of Late Victorian/Edwardian houses, properties have many common characteristics. Houses are built of brick laid in either English or Flemish bond. Properties have medium-to-high solid-void-ratios with vertical windows. Houses have active frontages with doors and/or windows overlooking the road, creating a feeling of activity along streets. Windows are mostly uPVC or wood replacements, although many original wooden sash windows survive, especially on larger-scale properties. Windows have thin stone sills, many of which are painted white. The majority of windows have stone lintels with chamfered or carved decoration, although some houses have cambered and segmental brick arches. Roofs are mostly of slate, although some have been re-roofed in concrete tile.
Larger-scale properties are highly individual in character, and are differentiated through variation in building form and scale as well as the incorporation of a variety of decorative features. Buildings are detached and semi-detached houses. Properties are either a tall two storeys or three storeys in height, and are mostly two substantial bays in width, although some of the largest properties are up to four bays in width. The majority of buildings appear to have been constructed as individual build units, illustrated by their individual nature of their form and decoration.
Properties are located in large rectangular plots orientated perpendicular to the road. Houses are set back between three and fourteen metres from the footway, with properties on the steepest part of the slope set back the furthest. The majority of plots are defined by brick walls, with the exception of the limestone boundary wall at number 26 Carline Road, and mature borders. Properties have gardens and/or driveways to the front, many of which have mature trees and vegetation that partially screens buildings from the road. The front boundaries of plots on the steepest part of the escarpment are defined by brick retaining walls, and frequently only have pedestrian access at the front of their plots. Consequently car access is often to the rear of properties where peripheral road infrastructure permits, such as Alexandra Terrace and Carline Road. Large-scale buildings set within large plots create a coarse grain in much of the townscape, leading to a low overall building density and an open sense of enclosure along much of Yarborough Road and The Avenue. The open sense of enclosure increases around major junctions (e.g. at the intersection of Long Leys Road), and decreases around steeper parts of the escarpment with elevated building lines on the uphill side of the slope.
A number of large-scale properties have original wooden sash windows, some of which have multi-paned upper sashes above single or paired windows, such as number 96 West Parade. Several houses, particularly on projecting rectangular bays, have pairs of vertical windows. Front doors on houses are either located centrally on the front façade, as pairs on semi-detached properties or between two bays on detached houses, or are located on the sides of properties. Entrances to the side either are set back from the front façade but remain facing towards the front of plots, or face the neighbouring plot. Entranceways are usually set within a recessed or projecting porch, and are grand in appearance with heavy carved stone lintels or ornate wooden porches. Houses located on steeper parts of the escarpment have entranceway above exposed basement levels, requiring a series of steps to the front or side of the house. Basement levels often have entrances, usually in the form of a solid door. A number of steps have been replaced during the Modern Period.
Figure 2 Rendered three storey Late Victorian/Edwardian properties on Yarborough Road with projecting rectangular and canted bay windows and shared second-floor balcony. The front of the property is obscured by a large-scale modern external stairwell built in modern orange brick
Large-scale Late Victorian/Edwardian houses vary considerably in decoration and built form. Houses frequently have projecting wings, many of which have ornate gable ends facing the road, and/or one to three storey bay windows. Bay windows are mostly canted or rectangular bays, but there are a small number of bow shaped bays (e.g. numbers 8 and 13 The Avenue). Two distinctive V-shaped bay windows, which maintain the pattern of traced houses whilst allowing for a slightly reduced building plot, are located on numbers 19 and 21 Carline Road. The projections are built of brick, stone or wood, and are plain or loosely classical in style. Bay windows are roofed in a variety of manners, including flat roofs occasionally with low brick/stone parapets, hipped lead/slate roofs, and swept or convex lead roofs (e.g. number 26 Carline Road). A number of taller south-facing properties have tall bay windows with balconies. Several houses have distinctive projecting features such as the gothic tower at number 2 Yarborough Road and the oriel window at number 26 Carline Road. Many properties retain cast-iron railings or cresting along balconies and projecting bay roofs respectively. A limited number of houses in the area have ceramic or stone date stones with the building’s year of construction.
Figure 3 Rising pattern of house facades and chimneys up Yarborough Road
Roofs on large-scale properties are mostly gabled with their ridgelines running parallel to the street, although several houses have hipped roofs. Many roof structures incorporate projecting gabled or hipped features at eaves level on the front façade, often above projecting wings, bay and other windows. The features often form blind dormer windows at eaves level. Several properties in the Character Area have dormer windows set wholly within the roof space, or more infrequently, at the front of the building spanning the eaves line. The style of dormer often replicates the architectural style of the buildings (e.g. the polygonal dormer and bay windows with applied timberwork at number 5 The Avenue) although some modern dormers are plainer in style (e.g. the large cubic dormers at 15-17 The Avenue). Gable ends facing the street are frequently highly individual in style, such as the Dutch style gables at numbers 13 The Avenue and 102 West Parade, and the ornate wooden balconies set into gable ends at numbers 121-125 Yarborough Road. The apexes of roofs are frequently decorated with a ceramic, wooden or metal finial. Eaves and verges are often deep and are simply decorated with wooden brackets or brick dentilation. Roofs are mainly of Welsh slate, although a small number of houses have been re-roofed with concrete tile. Large-scale properties have tall brick chimneys, the majority of which are built within or projecting from the gable wall, although a few are built within the house avoiding the ridge. Several chimneys have recessed brick panels and over sailing brick courses (e.g. number 15/17 The Avenue). Roofs and chimneys form a repeating pattern along streets, which is accentuated by the rise and fall of the hill slope.
Two identical modern apartment buildings, located at numbers 53-59, are similar in scale and aspect to surrounding large-scale Late Victorian/Edwardian buildings. However, the properties occupy a larger rectangular grassed plot aligned parallel to the road. In addition, the buildings are plain in form and decoration with synthetic stone quoins, and brick dentilation in the verges.
Figure 4 Pair of identical modern apartment blocks at 53-59 Yarborough Road with undefined central plot boundary and grassed plot
Smaller-scale terraced houses are located in less prominent positions in the Character Area, such as along Belle Vue Terrace and Yarborough Crescent in the far north of the Character Area, as well as terraced houses at numbers 82-110 Yarborough Road. Terraced properties are two storeys in height and two/three bays in width, and form strong and continuous building lines along streets. Houses are set back 2-3m from the footway and are located towards the front of short rectangular plots that run perpendicular to the road. The majority of forecourts are defined by low brick walls, although several of which along Yarborough Road have been demolished to allow for car parking. A small number of terraced houses are arranged in short rows at right angles to roads (e.g. numbers 10-25 Belle Vue Road, 18,20,32 and 34 Yarborough Road, 30-34 Ashlin Grove and 27 North Parade).
Figure 5 Strong building line of north facing terraced properties up Yarborough Road
Rows of terraced houses mostly comprise single or a small number of build units of between two and eight houses. Houses within build units are usually similar in form and decoration leading to short but coherent building lines and façades. Different build units of Late Victorian/Edwardian terraces vary considerably in form and decoration. Plainer and smaller, two storey two bay width, properties are located in the far north of the area, along Belle Vue Road and Yarborough Terrace. The houses have plain eaves and verges, and little or no decoration on the front façade. Houses are usually accessed through shared entranceways (e.g. number 1-9 Bellevue Road) or are entered at the rear via a shared passageway serving an entire row (e.g. 10-25 Bellevue Road). Terraced houses along Yarborough Road and Yarborough Terrace are comparably larger in scale, being up to three bays in width and three storeys in height. The properties are more ornate in style, with canted or rectangular bay windows, moulded and/or dentilated brickwork in the eaves, and stone dressings in the form of window lintels and semi-circular arches above recessed porches. Roofs often have gable ends or blind dormers facing the street with applied timber framing or timber decoration.
Roofs on Late Victorian/Edwardian terraced houses are gabled, and mostly have their ridgelines running parallel to the road, except some more prominent rows, which have their gable ends facing the street (e.g. 82-110 Yarborough Road). Chimneys are built of brick and are built in the gable/party wall passing through the ridgeline. Stacks vary is size according to the scale of terraced houses, being larger and more decorative (e.g. over sailing courses) on larger and more prominent properties.
Ellis Mill is a landmark building in the Character Area, and is a conspicuous component of the historic skyline of Lincoln when approached from the south and west. The building is a tower mill of 3 floors with 4 sails, ogee domed wooden cap and fantail. The mill, which was restored by Lincoln Civic Trust in 1977-1981 is built of brick, and is painted black. The interior is accessed by a door at ground floor level with horizontally sliding square windows with stone sills and segmental arches above.
Remaining properties in the area include a development of Post-War council houses along the south of Yarborough Road, a modern residential development along Belle Vue Road, and several individual detached houses dating from the Inter-War Period to the Modern Period.
Detached houses are individual in style and form. Properties are located along the north side of Long Leys Road, and along the upper parts of Yarborough Road. The houses vary from one to two storeys in height, and are set within rectangular plots orientated perpendicular to the road. Houses along Yarborough Road are set back as much as 33m from the footway at the back of steep plots with large gardens to the front, whereas those along Long Leys Road are set more to the front of less steep plots. Properties are generally very plain in decoration, with few projections and plain eaves and verges. Gabled and hipped roofs vary in pitch and are of variety of materials including concrete and ceramic tile and slate. Properties are brick-built in stretcher bond, with the exception of number 39 Long Leys Road, which has vertically stack-bonded brickwork laid as stretchers.
Figure 6 Vertically stack bonded brickwork laid as stretchers on number 39 Long Leys Road
The development of 12 semi-detached council houses off the south side of Yarborough Road is highly coherent in character. Houses are set back between eight to thirteen metres from the road, and are located towards the front of deep plots that extend down slope to the rear. Properties are semi-detached, and are built of brick with hipped tile roofs. Buildings have two projecting wings to the front either side of a pair of entrances set beneath a shared single gabled porch. Properties have active frontages facing Yarborough Road, and have high solid-to-void ratios with horizontal uPVC windows. First-floor windows are set high up beneath shallow eaves. Houses are plain in character with no apparent decoration.
Figure 7 Post-War Council housing down slope of Yarborough Road
The modern residential development along Belle Vue Road consists of mainly detached houses set in small plots aligned obliquely to the road to maximise views off the escarpment. The buildings are set back from the footway with small forecourts which allow for parking. The houses are built of a light orange brick and are plain in character, with no apparent decoration. Houses have shallow pitched concrete tile roofs.
Streets in the Character Area are two lanes in width, and appear to be in good condition. Connecting roads, such as Carline Road, Long Leys Road and Yarborough Road, are comparably wider than cul-de-sacs (e.g. Yarborough Terrace and Belle Vue Road). Roads are tarmac and have modern concrete kerbs and channels, with the only exception of the private road Theodore Street, which has York Stone kerbs and gutters. Road noise, much of which derives from Yarborough Road, is conspicuous throughout of the area.
Street furniture is mostly modern, including tall steel street lighting, wooden telegraph poles, traffic lights, steel fencing around some junctions, and steel street signage. However, some original or replica cast-iron features survive, including the Post-War railings along north side of Whitton Park, the handrails leading form Yarborough Road to North Parade and Ashlin Grove, and the letterbox on the corner of Queen’s Crescent. Some cast-iron street nameplates survive, although many have been replaced by modern freestanding steel signs.
Much of the Character Area consists of open space, with large spacious gardens around houses alongside substantial areas of open public space within and bordering the Character Area. Private gardens have mature trees and vegetation, and create a suburban feeling of green space throughout much of the area.
Figure 8 View north of Liquorice Park, with allotments in the foreground
The Character Area includes Liquorice Park, an area of south-west facing rough grassland and scrub that has developed on land formerly used as allotments. Groups of volunteers have cleared pathways and created habitat features described as Wetland, butterfly area, spring meadow, summer meadow, orchard and copse. The southern part of the site bordering Yarborough Road is still used as allotments. In addition, the area borders West Common and Whitton Park, which front Long Leys Road and Yarborough Road respectively. The large open spaces, contribute to the open and suburban character of the Character Area, and helps soften the transition between the rural landscape to the west and the central urban area to the east.