UK Heritage Protection System

The national treasures are ‘finite assets’ that connect the ages, protect our ancestor’s memories and preserve our heritage. All of the structures that identify Britain are our inheritance. “English Heritage has the task of identifying and protecting this inheritance in England. The main means of doing this is by listing recommending buildings for inclusion on statutory lists of buildings of special architectural or historic interest” (About Listed Buildings 2006). This discussion will appraise the English Heritage protection system by examining its brief history and present responsibilities along with how its various policies are perceived by the public. It will critique the current aspects and roles of English Heritage and outline opportunities for reform as well as listing its various accomplishments, technological advancements in the system and future goals.

The Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission for England commonly referred to as the English Heritage, is a non-departmental government-sponsored public organization supported by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) (Wikipedia English Heritage 2006). The Town and Country Planning Act of 1932 introduced the first implementation of building preservation regulations. The first historic buildings list of England was provided for all areas in the 1950s and 1960s. In 1970, a criterion for building selection for listing was established so that the lists could be updated. This step was in preparation for impending legislation. “The Secretary of State for the Environment is required to compile lists of buildings of special architectural or historic interest, for the guidance of local planning authorities in the exercise of their own planning functions under the Town and Country Planning Act 1971” (About Listed Buildings 2006).

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