The IHBC has welcomed formally the Government’s update of its Historic Environment (HE) guidance, issued following earlier revisions to England’s National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), in particular the further clarification of the four interests that make up ‘heritage interest’: Archaeological, Architectural and artistic, and Historic interest.
image: Conservation Professional Practice Principles
IHBC Policy Chair Roy Lewis said: ‘It is helpful that the revised guidance has drawn attention to the specific interests that make up heritage significance. The terminology reflects the words of statute and the NPPF.
‘Practice has moved on from the terminology used in 2008 when Historic England’s Conservation Principles was published, and I look forward to Historic England replacing that document with its updated version.’
The National Planning Policy Framework definition further states that in the planning context heritage interest may be archaeological, architectural, artistic or historic. This can be interpreted as follows:
- archaeological interest: As defined in the Glossary to the National Planning Policy Framework, there will be archaeological interest in a heritage asset if it holds, or potentially holds, evidence of past human activity worthy of expert investigation at some point.
- architectural and artistic interest: These are interests in the design and general aesthetics of a place. They can arise from conscious design or fortuitously from the way the heritage asset has evolved. More specifically, architectural interest is an interest in the art or science of the design, construction, craftsmanship and decoration of buildings and structures of all types. Artistic interest is an interest in other human creative skill, like sculpture.
- historic interest: An interest in past lives and events (including pre-historic). Heritage assets can illustrate or be associated with them. Heritage assets with historic interest not only provide a material record of our nation’s history, but can also provide meaning for communities derived from their collective experience of a place and can symbolise wider values such as faith and cultural identity.
In legislation and designation criteria, the terms ‘special architectural or historic interest’ of a listed building and the ‘national importance’ of a scheduled monument are used to describe all or part of what, in planning terms, is referred to as the identified heritage asset’s significance.
See the previous version of the guidance
For more on the NPPF revision see the IHBC NewsBlogs
See the IHBC’s joint Conservation Professional Practice Principles