Stanford Style / Stanford Aesthetics Committee

A group of informed and competent volunteers is safeguarding the village of Stanford’s architectural character, and the basis of its economy. For more on Stanford, click here.

The original layout of Stanford dates to 1857 when the Kleinrivier Valley Farm was subdivided. This layout was typical of rural villages: a simple grid with large erven and a central public square. This simple layout still stands today and this set of guidelines has been compiled to assist owners and developers to become aware of the unique streetscape and architecture which has made Stanford the sought after rural village it is today.

The Core Conservation Area A & B (map at bottom of page) encourages the preservation and maintenance of the historical features of Stanford and guides all developments in this area. It encourages alterations and modifications of existing unsightly buildings to harmonize with the Cape Village atmosphere.

Stanford’s architectural styles from 1785 to the 1930’s:

Stanford styles


Stanford’s unique street architecture
has the following features:

  • Open stoeps (parallel to the street)
  • Diamond windows at the sides
  • Vertical sash windows
  • Imposing front doors onto the streets
  • Victorian profile iron or fibre cement roofs
  • Roof pitches not less than 30 degrees unless flat
  • Gables of various types
  • Attic doors or windows in the gable
  • Low street walls…
    Conservation streetscape

Stanford streetscapeDo’s when renovating or building in the historic core area

  • Do try to make sure that your building is not out of scale with its surroundings.
  • Elements of streets architectureDo try to relate your building to the street in a similar way to surrounding buildings.
  • Do incorporate the elements of Stanford’s street architecture in your design.

Don’t’s when renovating/building in the historic area

Don't enclose stoeps

  • Don’t build in or enclose your existing stoep on the street.
  • Don’t fake reconstructions ie. Cape Dutch which competes with and devalues genuine buildings.
  • Don’t use fake thatching, cement roof tiles, large profile fibre cement roof sheets or IBR.
  • Don't use horizontal stoep windowsDon’t use modern horizontal windows or aluminium or steel doors that are visible to the street.
  • Don’t use horizontal roof windows.
  • Don’t use unplastered concrete or facebrick of any kind.
  • Don’t remove good trees or hedges without a very good reason.
  • Don’t build high walls on the street

AREA B (Outer Core Conservation Area)
Any buildings which are over 60 years old have to be dealt with as if they are in the Core Conservations Area A or B, otherwise the general building regulations apply.
Special considerations are:

  • Sensitivity to the river frontage.
  • Height restriction.

Special considerations are:

  • Sensitivity to the river frontage.
  • No double stories. Only attic rooms if these are not more than 50% of the ground floor area.
  • Cape Victorian or Cape Dutch style (as stipulated in relevant title deeds).
  • No vibracrete walls.

General building regulations apply.
It is suggested that the general architecture and rural elements of the Stanford style is respected.

Contemporary Architecture in Stanford
There is no single approach to conservation!
Therefore conservation does not imply opposition to development and change. Selective overlaying of ideas and building types of different historical periods has made urban environments far richer than could have been the case if everything had always been conserved and if the new had simply blindly followed the patterns of the old.
Contemporary designs for infill buildings in historical areas are not undesirable provided that they are sympathetically executed.

Boundary walls
Like stoeps, boundary walls and security fences are an important part of the way your house presents itself to the world.
These should not exceed 1.2m on the street boundary and 2m side and rear boundary unless a special waiver is obtained.
If, however, for aesthetic or security reasons you need a higher wall, it should be designed with a doorway in such a way as to harmonise with the streetscape and perhaps set back from the building line.
Boundatry walls
Minor works building plans must be submitted for any street boundary walls or security fence.

Rules and regulations:
All proposals for alterations to any building or for the erection of new buildings within or without the Core and Greater Conservation areas must be submitted to the Overstrand Municipality of Stanford for approval by the Stanford Aesthetics Committee.
Preliminary sketches can be submitted for their comments and suggestions prior to being drawn up.For more information please see the following available at Stanford Admin.

  • Zoning scheme Regulations Annexe A
  • Concept Structure Plan for Stanford Policy Document 1998
    Available from Stanford Municipality
    Tel: 028 341 0640

Conservation zones



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