What is a Listed Building?

Listed Buildings are buildings and structures considered by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media & Sport, to be of Special Architectural or Historic Interest which are included on a statutory list. The purpose of listing is to protect this country’s heritage of buildings. It is therefore intended to ensure that alterations do not harm the building’s special interest and that demolition is only allowed after the most careful and detailed consideration. Buildings are added to the statutory list by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) in 2 main ways:

1. as a result of systematic resurvey or review of particular areas or building types carried out by English Heritage and the DCMS;

or

2. the positive consideration by the DCMS of proposals, by local authorities, amenity societies or individuals, that particular buildings should be added to the list.

Most buildings built before 1700 which survive in anything like their original condition are Listed, together with many buildings dating from about 1700 to 1840. Between 1840 and 1914 only buildings of definite quality and character are Listed. Only selected buildings constructed after 1914 are normally Listed.


There are three Grades of listing:

Grade I Buildings of the most exceptional interest

Grade II* Buildings of particular importance

Grade II Buildings of special interest which warrant every effort being made to preserve them.