Listed Thatched Buildings

There are over 60,000 thatched properties in Britain, and roughly 75% of these are listed but what does that mean?

English Heritage say:

Listing helps us acknowledge and understand our shared history.  It marks and celebrates a building’s special architectural and historic interest, and also brings it under the consideration of the planning system so that some thought will be taken about its future.

Categories of listed buildings

  • Grade I buildings are of exceptional interest, sometimes considered to be internationally important; only 2.5% of listed buildings are Grade I
  • Grade II* buildings are particularly important buildings of more than special interest; 5.5% of listed buildings are Grade II*
  • Grade II buildings are nationally important and of special interest; 92% of all listed buildings are in this class and it is the most likely grade of listing for a home owner.

In England there are approximately 374,081 listed building entries.

How will listing affect me?

Listing is not a preservation order, preventing change. Listing is an identification stage where buildings are marked and celebrated as having exceptional architectural or historic special interest, before any planning stage which may decide a building’s future.

Listing does not freeze a building in time, it simply means that listed building consent must be applied for in order to make any changes to that building which might affect its special interest.  Listed buildings can be altered, extended and sometimes even demolished within government planning guidance. The local authority uses listed building consent to make decisions that balance the site’s historic significance against other issues such as its function, condition or viability.’

How do I find out if my thatched property is listed?

You can search on The National Heritage List for England to find out if your property is listed.  Alternatively you can contact your local authority, who will also be able to tell you if the area you are interested in is a conservation area.

Listed Building Consent is required for alterations affecting the character of these properties, from doors and windows to thatch. A change of the thatching material is also included in this.

Grants may be available for owners of listed buildings, but it is not standard across the country. Both local councils and English Heritage offer grants but it has reduced considerably over the years.