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Heritage Statement Masterclass

A bite-sized course for owners of listed or historic buildings to learn the basics of writing their own heritage statement in support of planning applications. Access an exclusive template, heritage resources, and 1:1 support from a qualified heritage consultant.

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What is a Heritage Statement?


A heritage statement is a technical document typically required for planning permission relating to historic buildings, buildings within a conservation area, and of course, listed buildings. It comprises an assessment of the significance of the relevant heritage asset and/or their setting, as well as the impacts resulting from the proposed development scheme.


At its most basic level, the Heritage Statement is a collection of information that encompasses a building’s history, its construction, its artistic and material significance to give the local authority planners a detailed look at what they’re dealing with. As any alteration to a historic building has the potential ti impact upon its significance, local authorities require a detailed assessment of the scale and extent in order to make a balanced decision.

About the Class

The class will comprise a 2-hour online presentation by Blue Willow Heritage's Director, Tiffany Snowden MCIfA. With. years of practical experience and in-depth knowledge of heritage as it pertains to the built environment and planning system, Tiffany is an exceptional facilitator of even the most complex and sensitive heritage projects. As a fully accredited  Member of the Chartered Institute for Archaeologists (CIfA), the highest grade of professional membership available, as well as being an elected member of the Association for Studies in the Conservation of Historic Buildings (ASCHB), she is committed to upholding a high level of professional and ethical standards in all aspects of her work. 

The presentation will cover all the basics you will need to prepare a heritage statement that is compliant and suitable for validation in a planning application, as well as offer advice on the different research resources available including:

  • Introduction to local and national policy, guidance, and legislation (England and Wales; Scottish sessions coming soon!)

  • The structure of a heritage statement

  • In-depth look at specific sections

  • Where to get historic mapping

  • The role of Historic Environment Record data

  • Advice on site photography

  • How to assess significance

  • How to assess impact

  • Run through a sample heritage statement

  • General FAQs about the planning process, role of conservation officers, etc.

Numbers are deliberately capped at 10 participants to allow for better engagement and ensure general questions can be addressed. Following the class, you will have the choice of either booking a 30 minute 1:1 session with one our CIfA accredited heritage consultants, or we'll take a look at your statement once it's finished, proofread, and offer suggestions/feedback. As part of this, we can identify the areas that are most contentious and provide a clear cut strategy for how to proceed. This includes flagging up any heritage or archaeological conditions which are likely to be raised throughout the planning process. You will also be sent a Word version of the template discussed in the course and retain copyright over what you produce.

Although the advice and template can be used for a variety of alterations, it is important to note that there is no substitute for expert heritage advice on more complex schemes. If you require additional support or receive objections which require negotiation or written rebuttals, then please do feel free to get back in touch and we will do what we can to help. It should go without saying, but participation in this course and use of the template, advice, etc. does not guarantee success in future planning applications, but the aim is to arm you with the knowledge, materials, and advice to create a usable document for your application.

Courses are run quarterly in March, June, September, and December. If you would like more information or have any questions, please feel free to contact us directly. 

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