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Listed Buildings and Listed Building Consent

January 30, 2024

What is a listed building?

A listed building is a building which is included in a list that has been approved by the Secretary of State. The older a building is, the more likely it is to be listed. Buildings that are listed usually have a special architectural and historic interest that needs to be protected.

Under the legislation, a listed building includes:

  • The building itself;
  • Any object or structure fixed to the building;
  • Any object or structure within the curtilage of the building that forms part of the land and has done so since before 1 July 1948

Listed buildings are graded as follows:

  • Grade I. These are buildings of exceptional interest.
  • Grade II*. These are buildings that are of more than special interest.
  • Grade II. These are buildings that are of special interest.

Listed Building Consent

If your property is listed, you are likely to need listed building consent to demolish, alter or extend the building. This consent is separate and in addition to any planning permission and building regulations sign off that may be required.

Please note that listed building consent may also be required for internal alterations that may not require planning permission or building regulations approval.

If you intend to carry out alterations to your listed property it is important to contact the Council to ascertain whether listed building consent is required before any works are started.

Unauthorised Alterations – the consequences

It is a criminal offence to carry out unauthorised work to a listed building. The maximum penalty for carrying out such works is either of the following:

  • An unlimited fine or up to 6 months imprisonment (or both) if the case is dealt with by the Magistrates Court.

  • An unlimited fine or up to two years imprisonment (or both) if the case is dealt with by the Crown Court.

The Council also has the power to issue a listed building enforcement notice if unauthorised works are carried out. This notice can require the works to be reversed so that the building is restored to its former state.

You may also find it difficult to sell your property if you are unable to provide evidence that works to a listed property were carried out with the appropriate consents.

If you would like us to assist with the sale or purchase of a listed property, please contact our conveyancing team on 0121 705 7571. Alternatively, please email

Parris Ball
Solicitor – Residential Property Department

This article is for general information purposes only. It does not constitute technical, financial, legal advice or any other type of professional advice and is no substitute for specific advice based on your individual circumstances. We do not accept responsibility or liability for any actions taken based on the information in this article. For more information, please click here.