A conservation area is a statutory designation of an area which is considered to be 'an area of special architectural or historic interest, the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance'. Areas are designated under the provisions of the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 whilst this and a range of secondary planning legislation governs how those areas are protected through the planning process, see the sections below for further information on making changes and the need for permission.
The council has a duty to pay special attention when determining development proposals to the desirability of preserving or enhancing the character or appearance of a conservation area. This applies not only to developments within a conservation area, but also to nearby developments which could affect its setting.
There are now more than 40 conservation areas in the borough. This is the largest number for any single district in Hampshire, demonstrating just how rich the historic environment of the borough is.
We have produced a Conservation Area Appraisal for each of the borough's conservation areas, and have adopted these as Supplementary Planning Guidance. Some small or neighbouring conservation areas share an appraisal.
The earliest of these conservation areas were designated by Hampshire County Council in the early 1970s and the most recent by the borough council in 2004, 2006 and 2016. These areas vary greatly in character, size and history, from densely built-up urban areas of central Basingstoke to peaceful rural villages and parkland in the heart of the Hampshire countryside. They include some of the most picturesque villages in the county, but also areas of high development pressure and growth potential.
Well kept and improving village and town centres are vital for the economic growth of an area, and as such the preservation and enhancement of the borough’s conservation areas is a key priority for the council.
Full Planning Permission must be obtained from the council for the complete or substantial demolition of most buildings within a conservation area. Until October 2013 demolition within a conservation area was controlled by Conservation Area Consent. Permission is still required for demolition within conservation areas but this is now controlled by the need to submit an application for full planning permission. This is governed by the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) 1990, and any contravention of this can constitute a criminal offence.
The following demolition work may require a separate application for Planning Permission:
It is important to note that the emphasis of control in conservation areas is not on preventing development, but on managing change and encouraging the enhancement of the area. This allows a conservation area to accommodate appropriate positive change that will harmonise with the special architectural or historic qualities of the area, thus protecting its special character.
The various categories of development that would normally be allowed without planning permission are more restrictive in conservation areas. The Planning Portal provides a useful set of guidelines, including interactive online guides, to help you understand when planning permission is required. Visit the Planning Portal. The following works require planning permission within conservation areas, in addition to normal planning controls. Find out if you need planning permission?
The above list is for general guidance for single dwellings only; separate rules apply for flats, maisonettes or non residential properties. For more specific guidance you should contact a Planning Officer or Conservation Officer.
The above guidance is also different if there is an Article 4 Direction on a Conservation Area, please see the information below.
Satellite and television antenna
Planning permission is normally required for satellite or television antennas in conservation areas if they can be seen from the public highway (including public footpaths).
Guidance on the planning regulations affecting antennas can be found on the Planning Portal. You can normally avoid the need for planning permission if the antenna is mounted in a location which can not be viewed from any public area. Examples include:
It is important when arranging the installation of an antenna that the installers are made aware of the status of the area before they visit so that they can bring any special fixings which may be required for a non-standard installation.
Some conservation areas are areas of particularly sensitive historic character. This means that minor alterations will be far more noticeable and potentially damaging to the special appearance of the area. Due to this sensitivity, the council has powers to introduce what is known as an Article 4 Direction.
This ensures that a range of work, generally where it can be seen from the street, which could otherwise normally be done in conservation areas without the need for permission, can then be adequately managed through the planning permission process. Such work includes:
Some of our conservation areas have Article 4 Directions; including Fairfields, South View and Brookvale West and Basingstoke Town Centre all of which are Victorian or Edwardian urban areas of Basingstoke.
If you have a planning enquiry, send a message to the Planning Development Team
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