The need for permission
Listing is a tool to identify those buildings and places that should be celebrated as having special heritage interest. Changes to them need to be carefully considered to ensure that they can continue to be shared and enjoyed by future generations.
Listing does not freeze a building or place in time. It simply brings it under the closer consideration of the planning system, meaning that you will need to apply to make changes that will affect the special interest of your listed building.
If you want to undertake works that only require permission because your building or place is listed, there is no application fee.
Heritage and Archeological Impact Statements
Planning applications and Heritage Impact Statements
If a planning proposal affects a Listed building; Listed place; the setting of a Listed building or place; or an Area of Archeological Potential, you will need to undertake an Impact Assessment and submit it as an integral part of a planning application.
Check if a building or place is Listed or has archeological potential
The level of detail you will need to provide in your statement
The information you provide in an impact statement will vary depending on the type of heritage or archeological asset affected. Your statement should be no more than is necessary to reach an informed decision about the impact of your proposal on Listed building; Listed place; the setting of a Listed building or place; or Area of Archeological Potential. If you consider there to be little or no impact, the reasons for this should be set out and justified in your impact statement.
Heritage Impact Statement for Listed buildings and places
If your planning proposal affects a Listed building or place you should submit a Heritage Impact Statement. Your impact statement should:
set out an assessment and understanding of the site’s heritage value. In the case of Listed buildings, this may also include its interior;
assess the impact of the proposed development, whether beneficial, harmful or negligible on the Listed building or place; and
demonstrate how the design of the proposed development has been shaped by a consideration of the building’s heritage value and how adverse impacts have been avoided, mitigated or reduced
Heritage Impact Statement for the setting of a Listed building or place
The setting of a Listed building or place is the surroundings in which that heritage asset is experienced. Its extent is not fixed and may change. Your Heritage Impact Statement for the surrounding area of a Listed building or place should:
- identify which heritage assets and their settings are affected;
- assess whether, how and to what degree these settings make a contribution to the significance of the heritage asset(s);
- assess the impact of the proposed development, whether beneficial, harmful or negligible on that significance; and
- demonstrate how the design of the proposed development has been shaped by consideration of setting issues and how adverse impacts have been avoided or minimised.
Heritage Impact Statement for windows and doors of a Listed building
If your proposal involves changing or replacing windows or doors in a Listed building, you will need to submit a Heritage Impact Statement. Your impact statement should:
- provide a description of the state of repair of each window or door to be replaced and a justification for each replacement setting out why it is considered to be beyond repair;
- an elevational scaled drawing and photograph of the existing window(s) and door(s) to be replaced individually and within the context of the facade;
- elevational scaled drawing of each replacement window(s) and door(s) (@ 1:20) and joinery details (@ 1:5), with details as to how, in the case of windows, they are to open
Planning Advice Note traditional windows and doors
Archeological Impact Statement for Listed places or Areas of Archeological Potential
If your proposal affects a Listed place or an Area of Archeological Potential, you will need to undertake an Archeological Impact Assessment and submit an Archeological Impact Statement. Your statement should:
- set out an assessment and understanding of the site’s heritage value;
- assess the impact of the proposed development, whether beneficial, harmful or negligible, on the Listed place or AAP; and
- demonstrate how the design of the proposed development has been shaped by a consideration of the site’s archaeological value and how adverse impacts have been avoided, mitigated or reduced
Where an archaeological interest is known or thought to exist, and the development is likely to affect it, a desk-based assessment will normally be required in the first instance. If a desk-based assessments reveals that the impact on archaeological interest is likely to be significant further, more detailed and / or intrusive pre—decision archaeological evaluation may be necessary. Project briefs can be provided to inform different levels of evaluation.
Works to the interior of a listed building
Work to the inside of a listed building will require permission where it affects surviving historic features such as:
- historic joinery fittings such as staircases, fireplace surrounds, doors, moulded architraves, wall panelling and internal window shutters
- historic structural timber features such as ceiling beams and joists, original timber roof frames and early wide floorboards
- historic decorative plasterwork ceiling mouldings, cornices and central roses
- historic ironwork such as fireplace grates, fire surrounds
- integral original stonework features such as fireplaces, niches and stairs
- a distinctive or innovative plan form dating from before 1850
Work which might affect other historic parts or features of a listed building not identified above might also require permission:
- the Department of the Environment is able to offer advice about the need for and how to apply for permission
- In most cases, internal modern parts of the building, added after 1945, are not of special interest and are exempt from this additional control (This does not include external replacement windows or doors - see Heritage Impact Statement for windows and doors of a Listed Building above)
- changes to the interior of buildings listed and assigned a Grade 4 do not require permission
Changes to a listed building or place
The need to apply for permission does not necessarily mean that you cannot make changes to a listed building or place in the future, it just means that the impact of any change upon its special interest will be carefully considered
The Department of the Environment uses the process of applying for permission to make decisions that balance the building or place's special heritage interest against other planning issues which can include function, condition or viability, amongst others.
Carrying out repairs to a listed building
If you are considering work on a protected building or place we recommend that you seek advice from a suitably qualified or experienced professional.
It is best to seek advice from the Historic Environment Team about whether permission is required to undertake repairs as there are very limited permitted development rights (i.e. works that can be undertaken without the need for consent) for works to listed buildings and places.
Managing change in historic buildings - SPG advice note 6 (June 2008)
Windows and doors in historic buildings - SPG policy note 2 (June 2008)