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Pre-Development Scoping Assessment

A Pre-Development Scoping Assessment by a heritage consultant can quickly and definitively establish the potential for below-ground archaeology or other heritage concerns that apply to a given site, so developers can make an informed decision before they purchase a plot of land. 


What is a Pre-Development Scoping Assessment? 

Changes in Government policy in recent decades have given more power to local authorities to decide their own home building strategies in their areas, which has led to a surge in house construction by developers. Previously inaccessible swathes of brownfield sites now have the potential to be large and lucrative development opportunities, but due to many years of inactivity on these sites it can be a minefield to identify and satisfy the heritage issues that come with building on virgin or brownfield land. But what if you could know ahead of time whether a site is a good investment, or a heritage headache waiting to happen?

Identify Heritage Concerns Before You Buy 

Just about every plot of land in Britain has history and heritage attached to it, but some plots attract more protection than others, and discovering that there are serious heritage requirements attached after you have already bought the land can be a major setback. From retaining or restoring heritage features to allowing public access to parts of the site, or even prohibitions on building in certain places or styles, there are many potential roadblocks that can come up.  

A heritage consultant can, using tools such as site surveys, historic mapping, LiDAR, archival research and planning experience, assess your site in advance of you buying it to let you know exactly what the potential risks or opportunities are from a heritage perspective. That way you know exactly what you’re dealing with. In almost every case this can be achieved without the need for invasive works such as trenching or digging, and it can be done on plots of any size. From small patches of infill, to square miles of fields, to entire towns and cities, the consultant can establish the heritage impacts of your plans on the local area so you can begin your project with all the right information. 

The Blue Willow Heritage team has years of experience carrying out pre-development scoping assessments for clients of all types and on sites of all sizes, from small areas of infill to country estates and the local plans of whole local authorities. Thanks to an expert knowledge of the planning system and more than a decade working in historic buildings and historic landscapes, we can put this knowledge together to create a robust and watertight report establishing exactly what you need to know before any money changes hands. This not only prevents you from making a potentially costly mistake, it also puts you well ahead in the planning process when you do seek permission, and allows you to make sound heritage-based decisions from the very beginning. 

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