Design and Access Statements for Heritage Assets

Under the Town and Country Planning (Development Management Procedure) (England) Order 2015, it is a requirement that a statement covering design principles and access issues is submitted with any application for listed building consent, and some applications for works within conservation areas. 

The statement should demonstrate how the special historic or architectural interest of the building or area has been considered within the proposals.

Where appropriate, the statement should also demonstrate inclusive design, and explain how the approach taken protects the historic environment.   

Heritage Statements are also required for all heritage assets, and the two may be combined.

The Statement should cover:


The design principles and concepts that have been applied to new design in terms of:

  • Scale 
  • Layout
  • Appearance

Special Historic and Architectural Interest

How the design has taken account of national and local historic environment policies, and in particular how the design preserves or enhances: 

  • the historic and architectural importance of the building or area; 
  • how new work has been designed to harmonise with the existing architectural style of the building or area; 
  • the building or the area's setting; 
  • particular physical features of the building or area that contribute to its special interest or character;

Where there would be a potential impact on any of the above, the statement should explain why this is necessary, and what measures within the design approach have been taken to minimise its impact.


How does the approach to access balance the recommendations of the Equality Act 2010 with the particular historical and architectural significance of the building?

  • Detail any specific issues that arise because the building is a heritage asset; 
  • Outline other options that have been considered and why they have been rejected; 
  • If inclusive design has not been provided, explain why, and provide details of alternative solutions that will put in place to ensure the services provided within the building are made available in other ways.

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