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Conservation Areas

Uttlesford has many historically important areas in the district.

Wenden Conservation Area

Conservation Areas - what are they?

Conservation Areas are environments which are considered worthy of protection as a result of a combination of factors such as the quality of design and setting of the buildings or their historic significance. In addition to the individual qualities of the buildings themselves, there are other factors such as the relationship of the buildings with each other, the quality of the spaces between them and the vistas and views that unite or disrupt them. The interaction with adjoining areas and landscape, the quality of trees, boundary treatments, advertisements, road signage, street furniture and hard surfaces, are also important features which can add to or detract from the Conservation Area.


Conservation Areas - where are they?

You can find if any property is in or near to a Conservation Area by using our online mapping system.

Search for Conservation Areas ►


Uttlesford  Conservation Areas - what you can and can't do

There are 36 conservation areas and over 3,800 listed buildings in the District. These are shown on our interactive Local Land Charges and Searches maps. Our policy on design of development within a conservation area is policy ENV1 the full text of which can be viewed in our Local Plan 2005 section.

The design of buildings and extensions, either affecting listed buildings or located in conservation areas, needs to be of a particularly high standard, usually incorporating traditional materials and building forms and in scale and harmony with nearby properties. The Council will nearly always require the retention or replacement of traditional materials such as thatched roofs or flint walls.

Conservation Area Consent is required for demolition of unlisted buildings or substantial part(s) of a building within Conservation Areas. It is not required for the construction or alterations of properties within conservation areas or for the following demolition proposals:

  • Demolition of a building with a volume not exceeding 115 cubic metres
  • Demolition of a wall less than 1 metre high fronting a highway, waterway or open space
  • Demolition of a wall less than 2 metres high in any other case
  • Demolition of agricultural buildings constructed since 1st January 1914

It is an offence in law to carry out unauthorised demolition of a building in a conservation area.

Advice on works in a Conservation Area

One of the Conservation Officer's most important functions is to provide early advice to persons wishing to submit applications that affect listed buildings or conservation areas.

Seeking advice at an early stage may save you time and money and provide a satisfactory solution to design problems that are frequently difficult to resolve. Our Conservation Officers can be contacted on 01799 510462 or 01799 510531 and we have a pre-application advice system. Further details can be found on the Planning advice from the council page.

Conservation Area Appraisals

The legal background for designating a Conservation Area is set out in Section 69 of the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990. This states that the Council shall from time to time designate Conservation Areas, which are defined as being 'areas of special architectural or historic interest, the character or appearance of which it is desirable to conserve or enhance'. The same section of the Act also requires that Councils undertake periodic reviews. The Council has undertaken a programme of Conservation Areas Appraisals in Uttlesford. All the areas approved can be found on the Conservation Area Appraisals page.

Article 4 Directions

Article 4 Directions are a special planning regulation adopted by a Local Authority to provide additional planning controls in a particular location. The use of such Directions can be made in justified circumstances where a clear assessment of a Conservation Area has been made. Where an Article Direction has been confirmed it may withdraw certain permitted development rights in respect of dwelling houses for specified classes of minor alterations and extensions, such as porches, replacement of windows and doors and painting of the exterior of a building, which are set out in the Direction. The Council has a number of Article 4 Directions in place in the District. details can be found on the Article 4 Directions page.


Contact Planning

If you need further guidance on applying for planning permission, please see our planning advice page.