Protection of Historic Buildings

Historic buildings are our physical link with the past and when you know how to read them and interpret them, the walls really do talk. The information contained within their construction is often unique.
We can see clearly how different architectural styles have developed as building fashions have changed through the ages. They can tell us how building construction knowledge has progressed and techniques refined in order to make larger buildings, and how to preserve them against the elements. We can see how different tradespersons, such as stonemasons, carpenters, thatchers and cob wall builders worked their materials and refined their skills
They give us an insight into social history and how services have developed in buildings, as the requirements of society have changed, such as hygiene and sanitation, protection and security.

Historical buildings are protected by conservation or preservation law. Any alterations, extensions or demolitions must be authorised by listed buildings consent prior to any works taking place. An Offence will have been committed if this happens without authorisation.
Legislation protecting various types of heritage buildings include:
Ancient Monuments Protection Act 1882
Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990
Town and Country Planning Act 1947
Central Government Planning Policy Guidance No15 (PPG15)
A Statutory list of Special Architectural Historical Interest Buildings to which these regulations apply is maintained and provided by the Secretary of State for Culture.

In order to protect the historical fabric of a building, there have to be strict controls on what can be done to heritage buildings. In order to achieve this, buildings of historical importance are protected by “Listing”. Listed buildings are graded by their importance and interest.
The top tier is Grade I, where the very elite 2% of listed buildings lie, these have national or international significance. Grade II* accounts for about...