There are approximately ten thousand conservation areas in England, and over 2% of its building stock is made up of Listed Buildings which constitute a large percentage of historic cities like London. These historic neighbourhoods and buildings have statutory regulations in place in order to preserve their architectural and historic qualities.
Many parts of Central London are conservation areas (CA), including over 70% of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. A conservation area is designated to preserve the special architectural and historical character of that neighbourhood. Therefore, the appearance of these neighbourhoods as a whole is more strongly controlled by the local authority in order to preserve its qualities rather, than that of an individual building.
Listed buildings are designated to ensure the preservation of a structure with strong architectural and historic interest. We have worked with all grades of listed building, from Grade II and Grade II* to the most protected Grade I Listed structures. All listed buildings can be found on the Historic England register: List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest.
Once a building is listed, both the exterior and interior become legally protected and you must obtain Listed Building Consent, often in addition to planning consents, from your local authority in order to make any alterations or extensions or demolish any part of the structure.
These old buildings may have been extended incrementally over time and therefore, each room and floor will have a greater or lesser historical significance depending on how far each element has departed from its original historic design. However, the building in its entirety is listed. Whilst these building are strongly protected, there is still the possibility for alteration with sensitive, well evidenced proposals.
An experienced architect who has worked with many listed buildings we can advise on design possibilities to unlock the potential your heritage assets, often with modern insertions. We undertake a careful examination of the existing and regularly work with specialist consultants in order to put forward compelling cases to renovate and reuse these historic properties. Removing more recent, poor quality extensions and reinstating historic character, with traditional methods and materials, and plan form is usually supported with particular consideration given to principal floors, the front façade and roof form.