HE9 Enabling Development for the Conservation of Heritage Assets

Closeddate_range16 Oct, 2019, 9:30am - 11 Dec, 2019, 5:00pm

Policy HE9 Enabling Development for the Conservation of Heritage Assets

Council will only permit Enabling Development relating to the conservation, refurbishment and re-use of a Heritage Asset58 in exceptional circumstances where it will not materially harm its heritage value or setting. It must be demonstrated through a Statement of Justification that all the following criteria will be met:

  1. the heritage asset to be subsidised by the proposed enabling development will bring significant long-term benefits according to its scale and location;
  2. the conservation of the heritage asset would otherwise be either operationally or financially unviable;
  3. the impact of the enabling development is precisely defined at the outset;
  4. the scale of the proposed enabling development does not exceed what is necessary to support the conservation of the heritage asset;
  5. sufficient subsidy is not available from any other source;
  6. the public benefit decisively outweighs the disbenefits of departing from other planning policies;
  7. it will not materially harm the heritage values of the heritage asset or its setting;
  8. it avoids detrimental fragmentation of the management of the space;
  9. it will secure the long-term future of the heritage asset and, where applicable, its continued use for a sympathetic purpose; and
  10. it is necessary to resolve problems arising from the inherent needs of the heritage asset, rather than circumstances of the present owner, or the purchase price paid.

Justification and Amplification

Enabling Development is development which conflicts with other policies in the LDP and which, in its own right, would normally be considered unacceptable, but which may be supported if Council is satisfied that the proposal will facilitate and secure the long-term future of a heritage asset by using the profit generated by the proposed development. It is intended that this policy will only be used as a last resort where the long-term public benefit of securing a significant place decisively outweighs the disadvantages of departing from other LDP policy provisions. It allows for assessment of such proposals as a preliminary requirement and will not be implemented if Council is uncertain that the public benefit will be gained. The conflict with other planning policies places a responsibility on both the developer and the Council to carefully assess whether the public benefit arising from the restoration of the historic asset outweighs the disbenefit from setting aside other policies.

The design of the new enabling development is required to be of high quality. Aside from the specific areas of conflict, the proposed development must accord with the General Policy and other provisions of the LDP.

Applications incorporating enabling development should be accompanied by a detailed Statement of Justification setting out the need for the proposal and the public benefit. This statement should include sufficient, detailed financial information as is necessary to allow Council to make an informed decision upon the application. In particular, the information provided on the enabling development component should be sufficiently detailed to allow Council to validate the need for, and assess the scale of the enabling development and consider the impact on private concerns where this coincides with the public interest. The information supplied by the developer should cover all the financial aspects of the proposed enabling development, in a sufficient degree of detail to enable a proper assessment.

The scale and intensity of enabling development must be proportionate to the funds needed for the restoration. It should be the minimum necessary to generate the income for the restoration and reuse of the target historic asset. As the profit generated by the enabling development will be used for the restoration work, the costs of both elements must be set out in a business plan and financial projection accompanying the application, in order to allow the viability assessment of the scheme to be assessed.

Applicants should expect to have restrictive planning conditions, and/or a planning agreement attached to any permission and should therefore be prepared to have access to their own legal services to facilitate this.

  • 58 - For the purposes of this policy, ‘Heritage Asset’ means a building, monument, site, place, area or landscape identified as having a degree of significance meriting consideration in planning decisions, because of its heritage interest. Heritage asset includes any part of the historic environment that has heritage value including scheduled monuments, archaeological remains, historic buildings (both statutorily listed or of more local significance) together with any historically related contents, industrial, marine and defence heritage, conservation areas, Area of Townscape Character or a Historic Park, Garden or Demesne.

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