How to apply for listed building consent, including what aspect of a building is protected and how to find out if a building is listed.
Buildings are listed by national government, which have been designated as being the most important historic buildings within an area. The older a building is, the more likely it is to be listed.
There are three different grades of listed building, depending on how their importance has been decided.
The scope of a listed building includes both the inside and the outside of the building. It may also cover structures within the property boundary, also known as the 'curtilage' of the building. Not all listed buildings are immediately recognisable and may include structures such as lamp stands, milestones, mounting blocks, crosses and telephone boxes.
Carrying out works to a listed building without appropriate consent is a criminal offence. If you own or intend to carry out work to a listed building, you will usually need to apply for listed building consent before the work begins.
Listed building consent is required for any work that may affect the character of a listed building, whether inside or outside the building. It may be required as part of a planning application, or by itself if planning permission isn't required.
Some people wrongly assume that only the front elevation, the part of the property that faces a highway, is protected. The scope of a listed building covers both the inside and outside of the building, and it may also cover structures within the property boundary or 'curtilage' of the building.
Listed building consent does not intend to prevent change, but allows us to balance the building's historic significance against other issues, such as its function, condition or viability. Listed buildings can be altered, extended and sometimes even demolished as long as appropriate consent has been granted.
Listed building consent applications follow the same process as an application for planning permission and usually take a similar amount of time.
There may be additional things you should consider before carrying out work to your listed building, as detailed in our householder's guide to planning permission and building control.
Applications to have a building or historic site listed are managed by Historic England and can be completed on their website. It doesn't have to be owned by you, and can be any of the following:
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