Georgian roundhouse on Belle Isle, Windermere copyright LDNPA

Listed buildings

What are listed buildings?

A listed building is a building, object or structure that has a special architectural or historic interest recorded in a statutory list by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). English Heritage is responsible for the administration of the listing system.

The Lake District National Park contains more than 1,750 listed buildings. Many others are protected because they are within the curtilage of a listed building. The statutory list includes a description of each building, which may refer to some, but not all the important features of a historic building. Every part of a building is listed even if it is not included in the description. This includes the interior and any later alterations or additions.

How can I find out if a building is listed?

Please contact us! We keep a comprehensive listed buildings list for the whole of the National Park, including a description of the building. Email hq@lakedistrict.gov.uk or call 01539 724555

Once you know a building is listed, you can find details by searching English Heritage's National Heritage List (opens in new window).

You can also use the Heritage Gateway's advanced online search (opens in new window) or British Listed Buildings (opens in new window). However these resources may not be totally accurate as many buildings are listed because they are near other listed buildings, such as farmhouses. And if a property does not appear, you can not assume it is not listed.

What do the grades mean?

Under the listing procedure, buildings are classified into grades of relative importance.

  • Grade I Buildings of exceptional national interest - about 2 per cent of all listed buildings nationally
  • Grade II* Particularly important buildings of more than special interest - about 4 per cent nationally
  • Grade II Buildings of special interest

The statutory controls on alterations apply equally to all listed buildings, whatever their grade.

What are the effects of listing?

You will need our consent to demolish a listed building or for any works of alteration or extension which would affect its character as a building of architectural or historic interest. This would be in addition to any other consents required, such as planning permission, advertisement consent or building regulation approval.

It is a criminal offence to carry out works to a listed building without prior listed building consent - even if you were not aware that the building was listed. To do this could lead to a substantial fine or imprisonment.

Please contact our Planning department for advice as the need for consent is not always a straightforward issue. The listed building consent process if very similar to the planning process. You will need to fill in listed building consent application forms and supply plans and details as necessary.

There is more detailed guidance on listed buildings and alterations  section 12 of the National Planning Policy Framework.

What works would be acceptable?

You might find the following useful to find out about our and the government's approach to conserving the historic environment:

Homeowners can also find more detailed guidance in the English Heritage - Your Home section (opens in new window). This has useful information about owning, looking after and altering an historic home.

How do I apply for Listed Building Consent?

Please read our how to apply page.

Useful links

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More links