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Listed Buildings

Information on listing and what it means for owners


What is a Listed Building?

A “listed building” is defined by the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 to mean a building which is considered to be of special architectural or historic interest included in a list compiled by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport. Applications for new entries to the list, or to remove or amend an existing entry, are made to English Heritage. English Heritage will assess the application and make a recommendation to the Secretary of State who will make the final decision. 

The National Heritage List for England  contains a wide variety of buildings and structures, from castles and cathedrals to milestones and village pumps. Entries vary from medieval cruck-framed barns to the most outstanding examples of modern architecture. It contains over 375,000 listed buildings, classified into three grades:

  • Grade I – buildings of exceptional interest (approximately 2.5% of all listings);
  • Grade II* - particularly important buildings of more than special interest (5.5% of the total);
  • Grade II buildings – 92% of all listed buildings, Grade II buildings are considered to be of special interest and warrant every effort to preserve them.

The list entry identifies the principal building or structure that is listed. The whole of the principal building (or buildings) is protected by the listing, including its interior, and any objects or structures affixed to it. Structures within the curtilage may also be included within the listing.

The list description will not necessarily include every feature of the listed building that is significant.


Why are buildings listed?

Buildings are listed for their special architectural or historic interest. This generally means that a building must be important for its architectural design, decoration or craftsmanship. It might be technologically innovative or display a significant plan form. To be of historic interest it must illustrate important aspects of social, economic, cultural or military history or be closely associated with nationally significant people or events. The building may also make a contribution to the group of which it forms part.

Special interest is assessed against criteria set out by the Government in its Principles of Selection for Listed Buildings 2010. Generally, the older the building is, and the fewer the surviving examples of its kind, the more likely it is to have special interest.  The aesthetic merits of buildings are considered, but buildings of relatively modest appearance may be listed if they are important for reasons of technological innovation or because they illustrate particular aspects of social or economic history.  A degree of selectivity is required, especially where a substantial number of buildings of similar type and quality survive.  The state of repair of a building is not a relevant consideration when deciding whether a building is of special interest.

The general principles for listing are supplemented by English Heritage's selection guides that give further guidance on the assessment of particular building types.


How do I get a building listed?

Applications for listing Link to external website can be made directly to English Heritage online at any time, but buildings under serious threat of demolition or major alteration and those which are obviously worthy of inclusion on the National Heritage List will be prioritised.  You will be expected to provide background information to support your application, including the building's location and details of its design and construction, historical development and any associations with notable people or events.  Photographs of the exterior and interior should also be supplied.

Tameside's Local Studies and Archives Centre may have further information about the history of the building. 

Local or national groups with an interest in historic buildings may also be able to help you with your application:

Tameside Local History Forum brings together members of the civic societies and local history groups at work within Tameside.

The Ancient Monuments Society is concerned with historic buildings of all ages and types, but with a particular interest in demolition cases, new design in the context of historic buildings and church matters.

The Council for British Archaeology is concerned with all historic buildings but with a particular interest in the archaeology of subterranean and standing structures.

The Society for the Protection of Ancient BuildingsLink to external website is concerned mainly with buildings constructed before 1714, but also with the philosophical and technical aspects of conservation.

The Georgian Group is concerned with architecture and architecture-related arts between 1700 and 1837.

The Victorian SocietyLink to external website is concerned with Victorian and Edwardian architecture and architecture-related arts between 1837 and 1914.

The Twentieth Century SocietyLink to external website is concerned with architecture of the twentieth century, in all decades except the first.

SAVE Britain's HeritageLink to external website campaigns for threatened historic buildings.

If you would like further advice on submitting an application, please contact us.


What does listing mean for owners/occupiers?

Listed Building Consent (LBC) is required for all works of demolition, alteration or extension to a listed building that affect its special interest. This includes works to the interior of the listed building, any structure attached to it or any building within its curtilage covered by the listing. Planning Permission may be required in addition to LBC.

Owners/occupiers considering making changes to a listed building or associated structure are strongly advised to consult the Planning Service in advance of any works in order to confirm what consents will be required.  Carrying out works to a listed building for which LBC ought to have been, but was not obtained, is a criminal offence.  Early consultation with the Council’s Conservation Officer is therefore recommended.


Are grants available for repair?

Tameside Council is unable to offer financial assistance for the maintenance or repair of listed buildings. Organisations such as the Heritage Lottery FundLink to external website and English HeritageLink to external website may consider funding specific projects involving the regeneration of historic buildings or the repair of buildings appearing on the Heritage at Risk RegisterLink to external website. Applications are rigorously assessed and grants are usually awarded subject to conditions to secure certain benefits such as increased public access.


Which buildings in Tameside are listed?

Tameside has over 300 listed buildings. To find out which buildings in the Borough are listed please visit the National Heritage List for EnglandLink to external website where a search can be made of the official up-to-date database.

The contact information below may be used to enquire about listed buildings in Tameside. Please note that we are unable to answer enquiries or provide advice on listed buildings outside of Tameside.