Conservation areas are designated for their historical or architectural importance.
Their designation gives the Council greater powers to control development and change within the conservation area boundaries in order to preserve their special character. The intention is not to prevent development, but to ensure that and change is sympathetic to the special architectural and aesthetic qualities of the area, particularly in terms of scale, design, materials and space between buildings. This page summarises the additional planning controls which applies to conservation areas, and provides guidance on how to apply for conservation area consent.
Conservation Area consent is needed to demolish all or part of a building or structure within the conservation area, including walls and outhouses.
In a conservation area, you need planning permission for changes to buildings which would normally be permitted. Changes requiring consent include cladding a building, putting up a satellite dish visible from the street, or changing the roof profile, e.g. by putting in dormer windows.
Anyone proposing to cut down, uproot, top or lop a tree in a conservation area, whether or not it is covered by a tree preservation order, has to give notice to the Council. The Council considers the contribution the tree makes to the character of the conservation area and if necessary it will make a tree preservation order to protect it.
The siting of a satellite dish on the chimney stack or on the roof slope or elevation fronting the road requires consent from the Council.
Design of new development
The Council has the power to require a very high standard of design which is sympathetic to the existing environment. New development must make a positive contribution to the character of the area. In view of this the Council can require additional information in support of any planning application showing how the proposal will relate to the conservation area. This can mean the submission of elevations of adjacent buildings, full details of the proposal and examples of materials and colours.
The Council has produced a leaflet to explain conservation area designations and the various planning restrictions that apply to them. The leaflet is available to download Conservation Areas Explained [60kb]
If you want to carry out work within a conservation area, you can get further advice from the Development Control Team. Please Our Development Control web pages have further information, contact details, and copies of the relevant application forms.