Should we protect local heritage not nationally listed?

“Buildings that are non-designated heritage assets can be of considerable local architectural and historic significance.”

Sidmouth’s Grade III and local heritage lists

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Some might consider the protections for national heritage rather poor – as this review from last year seemed to show:

A review of heritage planning policy – Vision Group for Sidmouth

In the meantime, at a local level, planning authorities are allowed to put together their own heritage policies:

East Devon’s local heritage list – Vision Group for Sidmouth

And back in 2020, the district council adopted its policy for East Devon:

East Devon Guide for listing local heritage assets – Vision Group for Sidmouth

However, ‘non-designated heritage assets’ (those that are not nationally recognised as Grade I or II) don’t have much protection against demolition, as this recent case in Herefordshire shows:

Village fury as planners give the go-ahead to bulldoze historic school

“There is enormous and substantial local objection to the demolition of this building which is a non-designated heritage asset of highly significant importance to the settlement of Garway…”

“I find it completely unacceptable that the legislation does not allow for substantial local objection to the demolition to be properly voiced through the planning committee where local objection to the proposals would get a proper hearing or enable us to get some idea of what will follow the demolition of the building. I am struggling to understand how we can allow the demolition of such a building can even be considered given the amount of embodied carbon within the building.

Save Britain’s Heritage challenged the planners’ interpretation of the law, and added: “These buildings are non-designated heritage assets of considerable local architectural and historic significance which we consider to be perfectly suitable for conversion and reuse… The building has not been proven to beyond repair or to pose a public health risk.”

Village fury as planners give the go-ahead to bulldoze historic school | rossgazette.com

Meanwhile in Cornwall, there are efforts to stop nationally-designated heritage from crumbling:

Cornwall’s heritage buildings at risk of collapse – Cornwall Live

As a summary of much of this, the SVA’s online talk from earlier this year asked if we should protect local heritage not nationally listed:

Heritage Talk – YouTube

Here are some links to some of the documents referred to in the talk:

Former Grade III List: EDDC Local List – Sidmouth 

With more details on each building: SUDC SIDMOUTH LOCAL LIST

1984 SVA Proposed additions to Listed Buildings: SVA 1984 additions to local list

2015 SVA Proposed additions to Listed Buildings: SVA 2015 additions to local list

Built Heritage – Vision Group for Sidmouth

Finally, heritage assets can also be an asset for the environment – as with the comment above on ’emboddied carbon’:

Making heritage greener – Vision Group for Sidmouth

Of which there was plenty in the former Fortfield Hotel – before it was burnt down:

Futures Forum: Fortfield Hotel … to … Sanditon apartments

   
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