Listed buildings

The List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historical Interest is a national register drawn up by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), on the advice of Historic England. It consists of a wide variety of buildings and structures of special architectural and/or historic interest. There are currently over 1800 listed buildings in the borough of Basingstoke and Deane. These vary from churches, farmsteads, (for example barns and granaries) cottages and houses, to bridges, telephone kiosks, a lamp post and even a dog kennel.

Why are buildings listed?

The Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport has a statutory duty to list buildings of special architectural or historic interest. This duty is under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990,

This is carried out in order to identify the best of our built heritage. It can the be protected and conserved, both for ourselves and for future generations.

Is my building listed?

If your building is listed you will normally know, through the local searches carried out when buying most buildings. Listed status is registered as a land charge. Or through receiving a notice of listing from the council at the time of listing.

The Heritage Gateway (operated by Historic England) provides a full online search facility, listing every listed building in the country.

This search should normally show whether a building is listed. Many listings were done several years ago and factors such as building name changes, parish boundary changes can lead to difficulties with searching.

The lists are also available for inspection at the Civic Offices, London Road, Basingstoke between 8.30am and 5.00pm Monday to Thursday and 8.30am to 4.30pm on Friday.

Buying a listed building

If you are thinking about buying a listed building, make sure you are happy that the building can provide you with the amount and standard of accommodation that you require now and in the near future. You need to understand that there are special controls and considerations involved in owning a listed building. Some typical issues which need to be considered include:

  • Consent for works such as an extension or other important changes cannot be guaranteed until the actual consent has been granted.
  • Key elements of a building's special interest are:
    • small room sizes
    • low ceiling and door heights
    • overall form of the house

And changes which could compromise these features may prove unacceptable.

  • The cost of works to an historic building are much higher than for more modern buildings. This is due to the need for specialist skills and materials and the additional time taken to plan and complete the work.
  • Historic buildings are often draughty although this can often be reduced by sensitive draught-stripping of historic windows and doors.

Historic buildings were often built without a damp-proof course, and it is rarely acceptable to install one now. Most damp problems can however be reduced by sensitive land-drainage and ventilation without the need for more major works.

It is important that you carry out your own research when considering buying a listed building, but please take a look at the related links to the right of this page which you may find of use.

How are buildings listed?

A programme of national surveys was undertaken by professional inspectors from Historic England. The Basingstoke and Deane area was resurveyed between 1982 and 1983 and the lists were published during 1984 - the majority of the borough's listed buildings were first listed at that time.

Historic England provides details for criteria for listing in selection guides which they now use to assist in deciding whether new buildings should be listed.

The list is a register. It identifies buildings that are of special interest, by giving a brief description of the building and its grade of listing.

Listed buildings are classified in grades to show their importance. It does not mean that a Grade I building is more worthy of preservation than a Grade II building. All listed buildings are of national importance and have the same level of protection.

Grade I - These are buildings of exceptional interest or rarity. Only 2% of the buildings listed fall into this grade.

Grade II* - These are outstanding buildings.

Grade II - These buildings are of special interest, which warrant every effort being made to preserve them. They form the vast majority (around 94%) of listed buildings both nationally and within the borough.

The effects of listing

A listed building cannot be demolished, extended or altered, internally or externally, in any way which, in our opinion, will affect its character or appearance as a building of special architectural or historic interest, without the prior consent. Owners, occupiers and their agents and builders should note that it is a criminal offence, to carry out work without consent. The penalty can be in the form of an unlimited fine or imprisonment. If an offence is committed, we may prosecute and/or serve a Listed Building Enforcement Notice on the owner to restore the building to its former state.

Listed building consent is obtained by a formal application. The listed building consent is in addition to any need for planning permission and building regulation approval. The fact that a building is listed does not necessarily mean that it must remain unaltered for all time.

The listing applies to the building in its entirety, including its exterior, its interior structure and fixtures and, in certain special instances, the fittings.

The description in the list is often for identification purposes only. It does not provide a comprehensive record of all the building’s attributes or features of significance. Therefore, if a feature is not mentioned, it does not mean that it is not protected by the listing.

The listing also covers any object or structure fixed to the building. This can be a piece of sculpture, a new extension or any detached structure within the grounds, if it was built before 1 July 1948.

Listed Building Consent is sometimes required for work even when planning permission is not. The following list gives some examples of when listed building consent is required. However it is not exhaustive and if in any doubt you should contact the Historic Environment Team.

  • Altering or replacing any of the windows and doors, including double-glazing and roof lights.
  • Rendering or painting exterior walls (where not previously painted).
  • Some re-pointing.
  • Replacing natural materials with concrete, imitation stone, resins, fibre or plastic.
  • Removing, rendering or changing roof materials, for example replacing clay tiles or slates with concrete, or long straw thatch with combed wheat reed thatch.
  • Fixing or removing bargeboards or external window shutters; changing or demolishing chimneystacks or pots or replacing cast iron gutters with plastic.
  • Installing solar panels or satellite antenna.
  • Fixing advertisement signs or shop front sun blinds.
  • Altering or removing interior features of interest such as doors, fireplace surrounds, over mantles, cornices, panelling and ironmongery.
  • Gutting a building and removing lath and plaster ceilings and horse hair plaster or wattle and daub panels.
  • All works of alteration, for example creating new door and window openings internally as well as externally.

If you are only draught-proofing existing windows or putting in secondary glazing it is unlikely that you will require formal consent. These systems vary a great deal, please contact the Conservation Team to check this first.

The council's conservation officers can advise you on the need to obtain building consent, the suitability of any proposed work and also on specific repair techniques and materials. It is important that you check if listed building consent is needed before you carry out work on a listed building. Carrying out unauthorised works to a listed building is a criminal offence and can result in prosecution and/or formal enforcement action being taken.

Before undertaking repair or alteration works to a listed building ensure your contractor/builder is aware the building is listed. They must be given a copy of any Listed Building Consent application and plans or conditions.

Special considerations

Alterations and repairs to historic buildings require special design skills, knowledge of historic building techniques and the use of sympathetic materials. In view of this the appointment of a suitably qualified historic building specialist is strongly advised.

Contact details

Planning Development Team

If you have a planning enquiry, send a message to the Planning Development Team

Contact us

  • Contact us online
  • 01256 844844
  • Civic Offices
    London Road
    RG21 4AH
  • Opening hours
    Monday to Friday
    8.30am to 4.30pm