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Your guide to listed buildings.
Listed buildings are buildings, objects or structures that have been judged to be of national importance in terms of their architectural or historic interest. As the term implies, listed buildings are added to a national list which is compiled by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). The older a building is, the more likely it is to be listed.
All buildings built before 1700 which survive in anything like their original condition are listed, as are most of those built between 1700 and 1840. Particularly careful selection is required for buildings from the period after 1945. Usually a building has to be over 30 years old to be eligible for listing.
There are three grades of listed building:
- Grade I - these are buildings of exceptional interest (currently there are 94 such buildings in North Norfolk).
- Grade II* - these are particularly important buildings of more than special interest (currently there are 202 such buildings in North Norfolk).
- Grade II - these are buildings of special interest (currently there are 1969 such buildings in North Norfolk).
As the listing process goes back to the late 1940s, most listed buildings will have already been identified. Occasionally, however, new information comes to light or new listing themes emerge which leads to new listed buildings coming forward.
Any individual or organisation can nominate a building to be listed. All such requests should be made direct to Historic England who will then assess the building in accordance with their principles of selection. The District Council is only a consultee in this process and therefore does not get involved in processing the individual requests.
Each listed building has its own list description. For longstanding entries, these are generally quite brief and are only intended to be for basic identification purposes. As descriptions are also very rarely updated to reflect subsequent alterations, they should not be used as a definitive list of all of the things included in the listing.
More recent list descriptions tend to provide more detail and sometimes specifically exclude elements of a building which are not of particular interest. Again, however, if a particular feature or item is not specifically mentioned, this does not necessarily mean that it does not form part of the listing.