Building Conservation

News, analysis and discussion of urban heritage and building conservation issues for town planners.

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Latest Building Conservation News

Historic England announces ten 'Heritage Action Zones'

Historic England announces ten 'Heritage Action Zones'

Historic England has announced the creation of ten new 'Heritage Action Zones' which will receive specialist support on heritage matters from the government watchdog.

No call in for controversial Paddington Cube scheme

No call in for controversial Paddington Cube scheme

The communities secretary has decided to not call in plans for a controversial office-led redevelopment of a former Royal Mail site next to Paddington Station in central London.

Southwark issues immediate article 4 direction on borough's 188 pubs

Southwark issues immediate article 4 direction on borough's 188 pubs

The London Borough of Southwark has removed permitted development rights for the conversion of all 188 pubs in the borough.

Olympic Park towers proposal to be reduced in height following protected views row

Olympic Park towers proposal to be reduced in height following protected views row

Plans for tall buildings at a key development in London's Olympic Park have been redesigned to reduce the height of the buildings following a row over the impact of skyscrapers on views from south-west London, it has emerged.

Plans approved for 31-storey Birmingham tower

Plans approved for 31-storey Birmingham tower

Plans have been approved for a 31-storey tower with 205 apartments in Birmingham city centre after planners concluded that the development would have a 'less than substantial' impact on heritage assets.

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Building Conservation In Depth

How we did it: Winning a battle to revive a Thames wharf

How we did it: Winning a battle to revive a Thames wharf

Close cooperation between public and private partners has saved a London wharf from redevelopment plans, David Dewar reports.

Why changes to St Paul's backdrop were not stopped by planning rules

Why changes to St Paul's backdrop were not stopped by planning rules

A row has erupted over the construction of a tower which campaigners say has harmed a protected view of St Paul's Cathedral, but experts say that is not clear whether a failure of planning guidance is to blame.

Why a London borough is removing permitted development rights from two-thirds of the pubs within its boundaries

Why a London borough is removing permitted development rights from two-thirds of the pubs within its boundaries

Wandsworth Council is pressing ahead with plans to use an article 4 direction to safeguard 120 of its pubs and bars, despite recent legislative changes that have removed permitted development rights from public houses listed as community assets.

Policy Summary: Trust guidance outlines planning's role in protecting parks and gardens heritage

Policy Summary: Trust guidance outlines planning's role in protecting parks and gardens heritage

Policy: The Planning System in England and the Protection of Historic Parks and Gardens - Guidance for Local Planning Authorities.


Building Conservation Comment

Legal Viewpoint: Court issues interpretation of heritage assets policy

Legal Viewpoint: Court issues interpretation of heritage assets policy

In a recent case from Gloucestershire, the High Court considered the interaction between the presumption in favour of sustainable development in paragraph 14 of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and the restriction on development affecting heritage assets in paragraph 134.

Legal Viewpoint: Joining the dots on heritage duties in committee reports

Legal Viewpoint: Joining the dots on heritage duties in committee reports

Planning should be about creative judgement and common sense. A recent High Court case on the conversion of a pub next to a north London nightclub into housing highlights the need to get the basics right.

Czechs' chequered history offers examples for heritage conservation, by Cliff Hague

Czechs' chequered history offers examples for heritage conservation, by Cliff Hague

Heritage conservation is increasingly a headache in austerity Britain, with rationalisations of space use, absentee landlords, the continued problem of VAT on repairs and maintenance and the squeeze on conservation skills in local government all threatening historic townscapes.

Prepare to resume old battles, by John Gummer

Prepare to resume old battles, by John Gummer

The planning system is a crucial environmental tool. However, like any other instrument, it's not always effective and, uniquely, its failures are clear for all to see.


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