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Councils can apply for heritage zone status

Words: Laura Edgar
Appleby / iStock-175191709

Councils, local organisations and groups in England can now apply for Heritage Action Zone status in make areas more attractive to residents, businesses, tourists and investors.

The scheme aims to encourage economic growth and improve quality of life in communities across the country.

Historic England launched the Heritage Action Zone project in March 2017, as reported in The Planner.

At the time, 10 action zones were announced, including Appleby in Cumbria, Coventry, and King’s Lynn.

Each zone will receive funding that could be put towards restoring old buildings, retail or community space; conservation areas could be improved to kick-start regeneration or historic sites could be developed as visitor attractions.

The programme is now being rolled out to support more historic places. In addition to grant funding, Historic England is offering its services, including:

  • Advice on repairing and finding news uses for buildings.
  • Advice on planning policy.
  • Help with identifying buildings that could be listed to protect them.

Duncan Wilson, chief executive at Historic England, said: “Sadly, some places in England that are rich in heritage are down on their luck. Towns and cities that were workshops of the world, thriving fishing ports or happy holiday resorts are in need of a boost.

“Through the Heritage Action Zone initiative, we’re working with local authorities and other partners to help transform places across England and strengthen their local economies. This year we’re particularly interested to hear from those who would like to use historic buildings to tackle the housing problems facing many communities.”

Applications for Heritage Zone Status must come from partnerships – this could consist of public, private and third sector organisations – and must include at least one local authority partner.

The deadline for initial proposals is 7 August, with interested parties invited to contact their local Historic England office to discuss a potential project before submission.

More information about applying can be found on the Historic England website.

Image credit | iStock