Within the Wealden District Council area, including that part within the South Downs National Park, there are over 2,200 listed buildings.
What are Listed Buildings?
Listed Buildings are buildings which have been identified as being of special architectural or historic interest and are designated as either Grade I, Grade II* or Grade II by Historic England. This relates to the quality and relative interest of the building. Whilst this grading reflects their ‘national importance’ there is no difference in the planning controls applicable to each Grade.
The buildings have been identified as being of importance to the national heritage and listing gives them legal protection against demolition or alterations which might adversely affect their character and significance.
How do I find out if my building is listed?
To find out if a building is listed, please check on the Historic England website (external link)
How do I request a building is listed?
Anyone can suggest a building to Historic England for listing. Historic England makes recommendations, based on specific criteria, to the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport, who makes the final decision on whether to list.
You can request a building to be considered for listing (external link) on the Historic England website.
Please note, the Council cannot list buildings and all applications for listing or amendments to a listing need to be submitted to Historic England.
What is listed?
It is a common misconception that only the outside of a building is actually listed and/or only the elements described in the list description.
The list designation covers the entire building, inside and out, not just the exterior. All works for alteration will require listed building consent . Any modern extension to the listed building will also be covered by the listing.
Any outbuilding, garage or structure, including a boundary wall, which is within the curtilage of the main building and which was there prior to 1st July 1948 is likely to be considered to be ‘curtilage listed’ and any works to alter these buildings/structures will require Historic England’s website (external link).
Works to any wall, fence or other means of enclosure which is attached to the main building or attached to any ‘curtilage listed’ building or structure will require listed building consent (pdf) .
Any new extension which is attached to the original listed building automatically becomes ‘listed’ and thus subject to listed building controls and such extensions will normally have had to have received listed building consent (pdf) in the first place.
If you have any doubts as to whether or not a listed building consent application may be necessary, view our works for alteration and repair of a listed building and advice on works to a listed building pages.
The Legal Bit
The Council has a duty to have special regard to the desirability of preserving a listed building or its setting or any features of special architectural or historic interest which it possesses (Section 66(1)) of the Planning (Listed Building and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 (external link) (thereafter referred to as the Act). This requirement is reinforced by the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) (external link) which at Chapter 12, sets the national agenda for ‘Conserving and enhancing the Historic Environment’, and in particular requires the significance of a heritage asset (listed building) to be understood and for this to inform future change in order to avoid harm to the significance of an asset through alteration.
Section 7 of the Act (external link) requires consent to be obtained for any works to both the exterior and interior of a listed building or curtilage listed building, including for its demolition, alteration or extension in any manner which would affect its character as a building of special architectural or historic interest. It is an offence under Section 9 of the Act to carry out works that require listed building consent without such a consent being obtained.