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Buildings of local interest

Buildings of local interest

The local list is a list of buildings of architectural or historic interest which contribute to the character and appearance of the National Park. Special consideration is given to buildings of local interest when planning proposals are submitted to the National Park Authority.

The local list is a non-statutory, local designation and differs from the designated Statutory List which is managed by English Heritage and includes Grade I, II* and II listed buildings. The main difference is the level of control which is explained below. For guidance on statutory listed buildings please refer to the section on Listed Buildings.

Planning Authorities are encouraged by English Heritage to identify buildings of local interest. When the Authority reviewed its conservation areas (between 2008 and 2010) extensive survey work was carried out to identify features which contributed to the character of each conservation area including buildings of local interest. These were subject to public consultation at the time of the review. Buildings of local interest can be viewed on ‘My Property’.

At the moment the Authority has only selected buildings of local interest in conservation areas; but additional buildings of local interest have also been identified by local communities when developing Village Design Statements. When staff resources permit, the Authority would like to work with parish and town councils to identify additional buildings of local interest outside conservation areas.

What does local listing mean?

Inclusion on the local list does not add any further controls that already apply to a building. It simply changes the level of consideration given to preserving its character and appearance when planning applications are submitted to the Authority. The local list reinforces efforts to preserve the character and appearance of the buildings that are included on it. It enables the architectural or historic interest of these buildings to be considered properly against development proposals submitted to the Authority.

It also provides clarity for owners, the local community, developers and planning officers so they are aware of the interest of the building as early as possible so avoiding unnecessary work or delays in the planning process.

The significance of buildings of local interest is recognised in the National Planning Policy Framework, and polices CP7 and DP10 of the New Forest National Park Local Development Framework Core Strategy have been formulated to guide decisions on planning applications affecting buildings of local and national interest. The Authority has been supported by the Planning Inspectorate when trying to resist demolition of buildings of local interest.

How are buildings added to the local list?

So far the Authority has only identified buildings of local interest in conservation areas. Identifying buildings of local interest has been an essential part of defining what is special about each conservation area.

The Authority is also working closely with local communities to assist with production of Village Design Statements. The Landford Village Design Statement (which has been approved as a Supplementary Planning Document) includes a list of buildings of special interest.

In the future the Authority would like to work with parish and town councils to identify additional buildings of local interest outside conservation areas.

What criteria are used when considering adding buildings to the local list?

The Authority uses the following criteria prepared by English Heritage to assess whether or not to include a building on the local list:

AgeThe age of a building may be an important criterion and can be adjusted to take into account distinctive local characteristics
RarityAppropriate for all building, as judged against local characteristics
Aesthetic valueThe intrinsic design merits of an building relating to local styles, materials or any other distinctive local characteristics
Group valueGroupings of building with a clear or significant visual, design or historic relationship
DocumentationThe significance of a local historic building of any kind may be enhanced by a significant contemporary or historic record
Historic associationThe significance of a local historic building of any kind may be enhanced by a significant historical association or local or national note, including links to important local figures
Archaeological potentialThis may be an appropriate reason to designate a locally significant building on the grounds of archaeological interest if the evidence base is sufficiently compelling and if a distinct area can be identified.
Designed landscapingRelating to the interest attached to locally important designed landscapes, parks and gardens
Landmark statusAn building with strong communal or historical associations, or because it has especially striking aesthetic value, may be singled out as a landmark within the local scene
Social and communal valueRelating to places perceived as a source of local identity, distinctiveness, social interaction and coherence often residing in intangible aspects of heritage contributing to the ‘collective memory’ of a place.

From: English Heritage ‘Good Practice Guide for Local Heritage Listing’. May 2012.

In English Heritage’s view, any one of these characteristics could provide the basis for considering that a building makes a positive contribution to the special interest of an area, provided that its historic form and values have not been seriously eroded by unsympathetic alterations.

Removal of a building from the local list

There may be exceptional circumstances where there is justification to remove a building from the local list. If you believe that a building of local interest does not warrant designation a request can be made to remove it from the list. The process is as follows:

  1. The request should be submitted in writing to the address below, explaining why it is considered that the building does not meet the criteria for inclusion.
  2. The request will then be assessed by the Director of Park Services and the Building Conservation Officer against the criteria.
  3. The final decision will then be made in consultation with the Chair or Vice-Chair of the Planning Development Control Committee.


Building Conservation Officer
Tel: 01590 646658

New Forest National Park Authority
Lymington Town Hall,
Avenue Road
SO41 9ZG

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