Slaters Terrace, Burnley

Slaters Terrace, Burnley

Whilst the name Enterprise & Regulatory Reform Bill may not seem planning related, there are significant changes to the existing heritage planning system included within it.

Read on for our summary of the proposed changes, if you have a planning issue with a Listed Building or Conservation Area call Claire on 01282 872570 to find out how we can help you.

The Bill was presented to Parliament on 23rd May 2012, with its second reading debate scheduled for 11th June 2012 and it will be one to watch.

The proposed changes include

  • Merging conservation area consent back into the planning system.  This will mean that only one application will be required to be submitted where proposals involve the demolition of an unlisted building and redevelopment of the site within a Conservation Area.  The present system requires a Conservation Area Consent application for demolition and a Full Planning application for redevelopment.
  • Making it easier to apply to the Secretary of State for a Certificate of Immunity from the listing of a building.
  • Enabling the creation of Heritage Partnership Agreements under a new section (9A) of the Planning (Listed Building and Conservation Areas) Act 1990.  These are agreements that a local planning authority may make with an owner of a listed building, or part of such a building situated in England.  The agreements can also make provision for granting listed building consent in respect of specified works including relevant conditions.  The agreement can also describe works that would or would not affect the character of the building; make provision for the maintenance of the building; make provision about the carrying out of work and prohibit the doing of a specified thing in relation to the listed building.
  • Allowing the Heritage List for England to define the extent of special interest in a listed building more clearly, and with statutory force.  This may include listing objects or structures within the curtilage that are not to be treated as part of the building for the purposes of the Act

English Heritage believe that together these sensible reforms will help deliver clearer and faster decisions, support timely understanding of the significance of heritage assets and potential development sites, and will support local planning authorities and the owners of designated heritage to focus effort and resources on managing changes with a real impact on special interest.  Together with the appropriate regulation to support them, these reforms will maintain levels of protection for the historic environment.

To access the Bill and follow it through the process please click here.

Kirkwells have an extensive knowledge of the heritage planning process.  If you have any questions as to how the Bill may affect you, please contact Claire Parker on 01282 872570 or email

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