Not all these principles will be relevant to every case, but a particular building may qualify for listing under more than one of them.
A building must:
- illustrate important aspects of England's social, economic, cultural or military history
- have close historical associations with nationally important people
- have some quality of interest in its physical fabric
When making a listing decision, the Secretary of State may take into account the extent to which the exterior contributes to the architectural or historic interest of any group of buildings of which it forms part. This is generally known as “group value”.
English Heritage selection guides
Selection guides for different building types have been produced by English Heritage and are available on their website. These highlight significant features likely to make a building of special architectural or historic interest within a period, region or style.
Please note: The statutory criteria and Principles of Selection take precedence over the selection guides, which are not comprehensive and are intended as supplementary information only. Selection guide content may change when EH gain new knowledge about different building types.
Grading of listed buildings
- Grade I buildings are those of exceptional interest
- Grade II* are particularly important buildings of more than special interest
- Grade II are of special interest, justifying every effort to preserve them
There are about 370,000 list entries, and of those over 92% are Grade II.
Applying for listing or de-listing
To have a building considered for listing or de-listing, submit an application form to EH. Full information including application form guidance notes are on the English Heritage website.
EH assesses buildings put forward for listing or de-listing and provides advice to us on the architectural and historic interest. The Secretary of State, who may seek additional advice from others, then decides whether to list or de-list the building.
Altering a Listed Building
DCMS is not responsible for approving alterations to listed buildings. The management of listed buildings is the responsibility of local planning authorities and the Department of Communities and Local Government.
Certificates of Immunity (CoI)
If planning permission is being sought or has been obtained, any person may ask the Secretary of State to issue a CoI in respect of a particular building. CoIs give certainty to developers proposing works that will affect buildings that may be eligible for listing.
To apply for a CoI submit an application form. Guidance notes are available on English Heritage website.
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