Historic Heritage Conservation

The historic environment is an essential part of South Somerset's rich cultural heritage, contributing to the sense of identity and quality of life in the district, the local economy and the well-being of our residents and visitors. Whether in the form of individual buildings, archaeological sites, historic market towns or landscapes, the conservation of this heritage and sustaining it for the benefit of future generations is an important aspect of the role the Council plays on behalf of the community and as the local planning authority.

The components of the historic environment are known as 'Heritage Assets'. These are buildings, monuments, sites, areas or landscapes positively identified as having a degree of significance meriting consideration in planning decisions. The following categories of nationally designated heritage assets are identified for protection:

Scheduled Monuments

Listed Buildings

Historic  Parks and Gardens

Conservation Areas

Registered Battlefields

Protected Wreck Sites - Coastal sites - none in South Somerset

World Heritage Sites - none in South Somerset

Other components may be identified locally and be taken into account when planning decisions are made.

The national list of Heritage Assets can be found at https://www.historicengland.org.uk/listing/the-list


 Planning for the Historic Environment

To a large degree the management of the historic heritage is carried out through the planning service. Legislation, the government's national policies and the Local Development Framework impose a series of measures for the recognition, protection and conservation of the various heritage assets and the local planning authority's responsibility is to ensure that these measures are implemented. National policy is set out in the National Planning Policy Framework.

The Council is committed to defining its approach to conserving and enhancing the historic environment in more detail and to achieve this, the Council has produced the Historic Environment Strategy (HES), approved at the Local Development Scheme Board on 14th February 2017.

More information

Understanding Historic Assets- Requirements in support of applications

Researching the history of your house

Somerset Historic Environment Record

Historic environment records are information services that seek to provide access to comprehensive and dynamic resources relating to the historic environment of a defined geographic area for public benefit and use The Somerset HER is provided by the Somerset Heritage Service and can be accessed here.


 Care and repair and technical advice

There are a number of useful sources of information about the  conservation of historic buildings, their care, repair and maintenance and about conservation of the historic environment more widely including

Institute of Historic Building Conservation http://www.ihbc.org.uk/

Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings http://www.spab.org.uk/

Building Conservation.com http://www.buildingconservation.com/

Historic England (formerly English Heritage) https://www.historicengland.org.uk and http://www.helm.org.uk/

Historic Scotland https://www.historicenvironment.scot/about-us/what-we-do/conservation/