Listed buildings

If a building is considered by the Secretary of State (for Culture, Media and Sport) to be of special architectural or historic interest it will be included in a list of such buildings. There are around 1,300 listed buildings in Hackney. 

Please note it is a criminal offence to undertake, or cause to be undertaken, works to a listed building without permission.

Read Historic England's guide to listed buildings.

Find out if your property is listed  

Search our map system find my nearest to find out if your property is listed.

Can you do work to a listed building? 

Listed building consent is not needed for regular maintenance and repairs which do not affect the character of an historic building ie if the repaired feature is identical in every way, using matching materials and methods. However, it is needed if the repairs include removal of historic material or changes to the building's character. eg internal alterations that include removal of historic doors, fireplaces or plasterwork or replacement of external doors or windows would require consent. However, works such as repainting or redecoration would not normally need consent.

Submit an application for listed building consent

The listed building consent process is very similar to the planning process, although more detailed information regarding the existing features of the listed building and how they are affected by any proposed works, is required.  

What policies apply to listed buildings? 

Generally, we seek to preserve listed buildings, their settings and any features of architectural or historic interest. We won't normally approve an application to demolish a listed building, allow alterations that would involve the loss of historic parts of the building, obscure the original plan form, layout or structural integrity, or otherwise diminish the historic value of listed buildings. Should you wish to carry out works to a listed building it is vital to consult a professional with experience of dealing with historic buildings and also employ a reputable building contractor.

Many listed buildings can sustain some sensitive alterations or extensions to accommodate continuing or new uses, but they vary greatly in the extent to which they can be changed without harm to their special architectural or historic interest. Our policies relating to listed buildings are in the unitary development plan and additional advice is offered in our supplementary planning guide. Detailed guidance is also included in the Government's Planning Policy Guidance Note 15 - Planning and the Historic Environment.

For grade I and II* buildings Hackney works closely with English Heritage in deciding whether listed building consent should be granted. The Council can't give itself consent to work on its owned listed buildings and these applications are considered by the Government Office for London. 

What Hackney can do about neglected listed buildings

Not all listed buildings are cared for by their owners. In certain cases of deliberate neglect or long term vacancy, a listed building is put on a register of buildings at risk.

How to get a building listed

To have a building considered for listing you have to submit an application to Historic England.

Listed buildings at risk

We monitor the condition of the listed buildings in the borough and when a building is in poor repair, or there are concerns over its future, we will attempt to work with the owner and other agencies to protect the building' s future.

Buildings which are at risk or vulnerable to becoming so, are listed on Historic England's buildings at risk register.

We have worked with the  Hackney Society to survey all the listed buildings in the borough, in an attempt to assess the scale of the problem. However, if you are aware of a listed building which you believe to be at risk please contact us.

Help for owners

We will provide practical advice to help owners to secure the future of important buildings at risk. If you need help, please contact us.

Grant funding for repairs

Hackney has limited funds to grant aid repairs to buildings at risk, but we can advise on other sources of grant funding, available from agencies such as Historic England, the Heritage Lottery Fund or the Heritage of London Trust.

Urgent works notice or repairs notice

We have legal powers to serve an urgent works notice or repairs notice on a listed building owner, requiring repair works to be carried out to prevent further decay. The notice will specify the works, which we consider reasonably necessary for the preservation of the building.

  • an urgent works notice is restricted to emergency repairs only
  • a repairs notice is not restricted to urgent works and may include works to preserve architectural details but can't be used to restore lost features

In extreme cases Hackney can do the work at the owner's cost or even compulsorily purchase the building.

Other building at risk registers

SAVE Britain's Heritage also maintains a buildings at risk database which includes information on Grade II listed buildings throughout England and Wales which is outside the scope of this register.

The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) also publishes a list of historic buildings in need of repair, or a new use, which are for sale or lease. The list is sent out quarterly to SPAB members who request it.

Page updated: 20/11/2017 14:21:45