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Historic Building Recording Survey

Historic Building SurveyWhat is an Historic Building Recording Survey (HBR)?

When work is proposed to a structure or group of buildings with historic interest, for example as part of a planning application, or to gain Listed Building Consent, Scheduled Monument Consent or Conservation Area Consent, it may be necessary to undertake an Historic Building Recording Survey.

This can be undertaken early, during initial design works, to inform the project team, Local Planning Authority or National Heritage Agency of the historic significance of a feature in relation to its history, fabric, cultural value and setting. Such input helps guide design works, allowing for a suitable plan to be developed that balances proposed change with the long-term conservation of an asset.

Alternatively, surveying historic buildings can be undertaken as part of the mitigation strategy often included as a condition of development. In these instances, a detailed record is made of the structure prior to works being carried out. This ensures a written record is made of the structure’s historic significance and development over time, capturing this knowledge prior to the point of change for future generations, including demolition.

Historic building planWhat does an HBR include?

There are 4 levels of Historic Building Recording Surveys that can be applied. These range from a high-level scene setting appraisal (Level 1), through to a highly detailed / measured survey of the building (Level 4). Whichever level of survey is required they all play a specific and targeted role in assessing and recording the structure, as part of the managed redevelopment of a site.

An Historic Building Recording Survey from AB Heritage will always be conducted in accordance with the latest advice and guidance from the Local Planning Authority and National Heritage Agencies, including Historic England’s ‘Understanding Historic Buildings: A Guide to Good Recording Practice’ (2016) and the Chartered Institute for Archaeologists ‘Standard and Guidance for the Archaeological Investigation & Recording of Standing Buildings or Structures’ (2014).

When are Historic Building Recording Surveys needed?

Though seemingly unchanging, many historic buildings experience ongoing renewal, adaptation and repair, to meet the changing needs and aspirations of their users. Historic buildings represent a finite resource and an irreplaceable asset, which can be rich in historical, architectural, and communal value.

An HBR is often required as part of an application for planning, Listed Building Consent, Scheduled Monument Consent or Conservation Area Consent, whether as part of the works to inform the decision-making process, or as a condition on such consent. In either case, AB Heritage is expert in providing the input our clients need, in a timely and efficient manner, helping them balance their historic environment requirements, with the needs of development.

“Extremely helpful and responsive at every stage. AB Heritage expertly guided me through me through the Listed Building Consent process and made the whole thing manageable”

James R Stevenson, Property Owner


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