A Local Centre: a diverse but compact predominantly residential area of large villas and terraces, based around Hyde Park Corner, the commercial local centre, and bordering Woodhouse Moor.
12.1 The Area
12.1.1 Hyde Park lies on the eastern edge of the Neighbourhood between Woodhouse Ridge to the north and Woodhouse Moor to the south. It includes Hyde Park Corner itself, the area between Hyde Park Road, Brudenell Road, Back Chestnut Avenue and Victoria Road, to the south, together with the Regent Parks and Cliff Road areas north of Headingley Lane.
12.1.2 The area adjacent to the Moor appears to have been named ‘Hyde Park Corner’ by a local farmer in honour of a visit to London early in the nineteenth century. It was clearly intended to give a prestigious tone to the place.
12.1.3 The Hyde Park pub first appears in the 1860s; the present building dates from the 1930s when the local authority carried out road improvements at the junction. This junction originally marked the boundary between the Leeds township and the out-township of Headingley.
12.1.4 To the north, Cliff Road leads to a mix of nineteenth century developments while to the south, between Hyde Park Road and Victoria Road, terraces built from 1850 onwards predominate in contrast to the large villas on Headingley Hill.
12.2 Buildings and Layout
12.2.1 Hyde Park is characterised by diverse, compact and irregular development. At its heart is Hyde Park Corner, which acts as a gateway to Headingley from the city centre, and whose landmark is the tall spire of St. Augustine’s Church (1871). Its other attractive feature is The Crescent (1906), an Edwardian row of shops with accommodation above, predominantly in brick and topped off with Dutch gables, which retains many original features. The inter-war mock-tudor Hyde Park public house dominates the junction with Woodhouse Street, and is linked to another attractive row of shops which completes the street frontage on the north side of Headingley Lane.
12.2.2 Further along Headingley Lane, the south side is not so coherent or attractive, being dominated by large advertising hoardings (which obscure views of St. Augustine’s), a single storey row of shops with more hoardings at one end and a disused petrol filling station. However, on the north side, there is a fine group of seven Victorian stone detached and semi-detached houses which are all listed and set in plots with large mature trees.
12.2.3 Behind these properties are the predominantly brick terraces of Regent Park Terrace and Avenue which have a strong character and attractive details, notably No 6 on the Terrace. Four properties on the Terrace are in stone (Nos 11-17), while the end terrace properties on Grosvenor Road provide particularly attractive ‘book-ends’ to the street. Again mature trees in the long front gardens add to the attractiveness of the Terrace.
12.2.4 The Woodhouse Cliff area along Cliff Road to the north is characterised by a mixture of large detached villas, terraces and even back-to-backs, predominantly from the nineteenth century, together with twentieth century infill of smaller semi-detached and short terraced houses.
12.2.5 The original larger villas were located at the end of Cliff Road, close to Woodhouse Ridge, and on Woodhouse Cliff itself facing Woodhouse Moor, a number of which are Listed Buildings. Many of the original nineteenth century houses have subsequently been converted into flats, notably Montpelier Terrace, while some of the grounds of the original villas have been infilled with groups of houses or flats e.g. Cliff Lodge and Cliff Side. The result is an interesting mix of house types in a variety of layouts with some developments fronting the street, but others at right angles to it, and with some houses set well back from the road, but others at the back of the footpath (51-54 Cliff Road).
12.2.6 To the south, the area around Hyde Park Terrace between Hyde Park Road and Victoria Road is dominated by long terraces in brick with relatively long front gardens, the longest row being on Ash Grove. Other notable terraces are on Hyde Park Road, Kensington Terrace, and Hyde Park Terrace. It should be noted that Nos 43-49 Kensington Terrace are back to backs. 12.2.7 The one stone - built terrace in the area lies directly fronting the footpath on Victoria Road and includes five listed houses and the listed Bethel Chapel (1886) with an attractive spire.
12.2.8 Stone and stone capped brick boundary walls add character, particularly at the junction of Hyde Park Terrace with Hyde Park Road, as do stone gate posts, particularly on Hyde Park Road, and mature trees in the long front gardens, notably on Ash Grove and Midland Road.
12.3.1 Within the Woodhouse Cliff area there are limited but important spaces which form part of the character and setting of the buildings, notably in front of Ridge Mount Terrace and Montpelier Terrace. In addition mature trees in the larger garden plots add to the quality of the environment, notably in the grounds of Cliff Lawn Hotel.
12.3.2 Within the Regent Park and Hyde Park terraced area there is no local public green space, unless you count the small grassed area in front of the advertising hoardings at Hyde Park Corner. The importance of the long front gardens and mature trees in them are therefore particularly important in greening the environment. Concealed behind the Sports Hall of the former Leeds Girls’ High School is a playing field.
12.4 Key Features of Hyde Park
12.4.1 Hyde Park Corner, an important cross-roads and gateway to the Neighbourhood, is distinguished by landmark buildings, including the Crescent, the Hyde Park pub and St Augustine’s Church.
12.4.2 The diversity of development to the north comprises blocks of terraces and semis which are in themselves very coherent; the intensity of development is alleviated by occasional larger buildings and open spaces.
12.4.3 Development to the south comprises numerous diverse but regular terraces; most of these benefit from substantial gardens.
12.4.4 Compact development throughout is also alleviated by a high degree of permeability, by back-streets and ginnels.
Extracted from Headingley & Hyde Park Neighbourhood Design Statement, Leeds City Council, 2010. The whole document comprises 56 pages, in twenty chapters, with 150 illustrations in full colour. Copies are available online at <http://www.leeds.gov.uk/docs/Headingley%20and%20HP%20NDS.pdf> or in print at HEART on Bennett Road.