Building Conservation

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

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Latest Building Conservation News

14-storey office tower approved in Newcastle despite Historic England concerns

14-storey office tower approved in Newcastle despite Historic England concerns

Newcastle councillors have approved plans for a 14-storey city centre office building despite heritage concerns raised by Historic England, after officers advised that the proposal's public benefits outweighed the potential harm to nearby listed buildings.

Judge rules that illegal conservation area demolition outweighed by potential future use of site

Judge rules that illegal conservation area demolition outweighed by potential future use of site

A council order requiring complete reconstruction of three illegally demolished Victorian cottages in the heart of London's docklands has been overturned by the High Court after a judge agreed with an inspector that the loss of the buildings would be outweighed by the potential use of the "prime" site for new homes.

Government details plans to lift planning restrictions on mobile network infrastructure

Government details plans to lift planning restrictions on mobile network infrastructure

Mobile network operators could be allowed to install radio equipment and extend masts without prior approval or planning permission, under proposals put out for consultation today.

Revised Chester Racecourse redevelopment plans approved

Revised Chester Racecourse redevelopment plans approved

Revised plans for the redevelopment of Chester Racecourse were yesterday unanimously approved by councillors five months after they refused an earlier application for the scheme.

Inspector refuses north London office scheme despite 'strong support' from Khan

Inspector refuses north London office scheme despite 'strong support' from Khan

A planning inspector has blocked plans for an 11,000 square metre office redevelopment scheme in north London because of its potential impact on nearby heritage buildings despite "strong support" for the proposal from London mayor Sadiq Khan.

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Building Conservation In Depth

How we did it: Creating new role to protect local heritage

How we did it: Creating new role to protect local heritage

Adopting a more proactive role in protecting heritage led Sefton Council to create a new post to take on the task, Mark Wilding reports.

The lessons from a council's chastening High Court heritage defeat

The lessons from a council's chastening High Court heritage defeat

The overturning of Liverpool City Council's consent for a 51-home redevelopment of a Grade II listed building shows that some planning officers are struggling with conservation considerations, say observers.

Why a court ruling will force ministers to explain decisions

Why a court ruling will force ministers to explain decisions

A Court of Appeal ruling over the controversial Paddington Cube scheme in central London should boost transparency around government call-in decisions, say observers.

What appeal court ruling on heritage means for planners

What appeal court ruling on heritage means for planners

A judgment allowing new homes near a grade I listed country house in Derbyshire confirms that planners and inspectors should take a broader view when assessing heritage impacts and not just consider the visual effects, say commentators.


Building Conservation Comment

The perils of prioritising tourism, by Cliff Hague

The perils of prioritising tourism, by Cliff Hague

Venice, Barcelona, Rome, Amsterdam, Edinburgh. These are places identified by the website CNN Travel as hotspots for "overtourism". Last year the Oxford English Dictionary made overtourism one of its words of the year. So what does it mean for planning, placemaking and urban conservation?

Legal Viewpoint: When historic use weighs heavier than appearance

Legal Viewpoint: When historic use weighs heavier than appearance

A High Court judgment this summer raised a key issue over the relevance of character and appearance when assessing the impact of proposed development on conservation areas.

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.


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