# Protection of assets
The most important heritage assets are protected by ‘designation’. This highlights a building, site or area's special interest and its value to this and future generations, and provides some protection under law and local policies. Within the Peak District National Park there are many designated heritage assets, yet even here, within a National Park, less than 5% of the cultural heritage has any form of statutory protection.
# Cultural heritage within the Peak District National Park is protected through Designation, Law and Policy.
However, 95% of the heritage assets in the Peak District National Park are 'non-designated' and have no form of statutory protection
The Peak District National Park’s most significant heritage assets are designated as Scheduled Monuments, Listed Buildings, Conservation Areas and Registered Parks and Gardens under a variety of Acts of law. Designation is carried out by DCMS under following recommendation by Historic England. All designated assets are contained in the publically–accessible National Heritage List for England . There are no World Heritage Sites, Protected Wreck Sites or Registered Battlefields within the Peak District National Park National Park.
Laws that enshrine the protection, conservation and enhancement of cultural heritage, include:
- The National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949
- The Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990
- The Environment Act 1995
- The Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979
- The European Landscape Convention (ratified by UK in 2006)
Cultural heritage within the Peak District National Park is also protected through planning policies, which provide some protection for both designated and non-designated heritage assets. The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) emphasises the importance of conserving and enhancing heritage assets so they can be enjoyed by present and future generations. The Peak District National Park's own planning policies also offer protection for cultural heritage asstes. The Peak District National Park Authority undertakes internal consultation around planning applications to ensure that cultural heritage features, landscapes and their settings are properly considered and change is managed appropriately.
Less than 5% of the cultural heritage features within the park currently have any form of statutory protection (designation). The remaining 95% of ‘non-designated’ heritage assets still make an important contribution to local character and a sense of place and national and local policies mean that they are still a material consideration within the planning process . These features may be conserved partly through formal processes such as the planning system and agri-environment schemes. However, the distinctiveness of the Peak District National Park and the significance of its cultural heritage, in its widest sense, is also the result of the care and consideration of a wide range of people and organisations, farmers, landowners, residents, business owners and employees.
# Heritage at Risk Register: Historic England
The national Heritage at Risk register is maintained by Historic England and updated annually. The register identifies those sites that are most at risk of being lost as a result of neglect, decay or inappropriate development.
The national Heritage at Risk register only contains designated heritage assets and excludes Grade II listed buildings (with the exception of places of worship nationally and Grade II listed buildings in London). The list is published annually and is publically accessible . The register helps Historic England to prioritise their work. Nationally there were 5,073 designated assets on the 2019 register, 87 fewer than 2018.
# The Peak District National Park’s Register of Heritage at Risk
Like most other local authorities, the Peak District National Park Authority maintains its own register of Grade II listed Buildings at Risk. This register is really important because 93% of the Peak District National Park’s listed buildings are Grade II. In the past the Peak District National Park Authority has undertaken a 5-yearly review of all listed buildings which helps to update the risk register, as well as enable us to give advice to property owners before buildings or structures get into poor condition – however in recent years reduced staff capacity has meant that this review is now carried out much less regularly and some data is very old. Our local Heritage at Risk information is fed back to Historic England and our constituent local authorities annually.
There are currently 158 Grade II buildings on the Peak District National Park’s Buildings at Risk Register.
Listed buildings are buildings or structures that are considered to be of particular architectural or historic interest, and are regarded as vital to the heritage of both the local area and the nation. Nationally this covers an estimated 500,000 buildings and structures. This legal protection includes both the exterior and the interior of listed buildings, and extends to cover other structures such as outbuildings, walls or other features.
Listed buildings come under one of three ‘grades’, according to their relative importance or significance:
- Grade I – buildings of exceptional national interest (2.5% of all listed buildings nationally)
- Grade II* – particularly important buildings of more than special interest (5.8% nationally)
- Grade II – buildings of special interest (91.7% nationally)
# There are over 2,000 Listed Buildings in the Peak District National Park
There are 2,143 listed buildings within the Peak District National Park (see table below). Some of these list entries contain more than one structure (e.g. a farmstead with several barns). The majority of these (93%) are Grade II listed buildings, 5% are Grade II*, and 2% are Grade I, almost exactly in line with English National Park averages .
Listed Buildings in the Peak District National Park National Park 2014-2020
The Peak District National Park’s listed buildings range from small cottages and terraced housing to mills, large stately homes and castles. They also include other components of the historic built environment such as bridges, stone crosses, limekilns and mileposts. The vernacular buildings showcase local building styles, techniques and materials, and reflect the contrasting gritstone and limestone landscapes of the Peak District National Park National Park, whilst others showcase some of our finest examples of elite and polite architecture. Examples include:
Grade I - Chatsworth and Haddon Halls and grounds; Peveril Castle at Castleton; Eyam Cross, Bakewell Bridge; Bakewell Church and Cross
Grade II* - Sheepwash Bridge at Ashford-in-the-Water; Chatsworth Hunting Tower; Hassop Hall; Cressbrook Mill at Litton; Eyam Church
Grade II - Magpie Mine at Sheldon; Tides Low Bowl Barrow; Lime Kiln and Standing Stone at Tideswell; Toll House Fish and Chip Shop at Stoney Middleton; the 1970s earth-sheltered house ‘Underhill’ at Holme
# A small proportion of Listed Buildings are at risk
There are currently five listed buildings on Historic England’s Heritage at Risk register within the Peak District National Park (0.2% of the total amount). These include one Grade I building and four Grade II* buildings (see figure 2).
Listed Building at Risk 2015-2020
|Listed Buildings at risk (%)||2015/16||2017/18||2018/19||2019/20|
|Grade I||1 (2.7%)||1 (2.7%)||1 (2.7%)||1(2.7%)|
|Grade II*||3 (3.1%)||3 (3.1%)||4 (4.1%)||4(4.1%)|
|Grade II||1 (0.05%)||1 (0.05%)||1 (0.05%)||0(0.0%)|
|Total||5 (0.2%)||5 (0.2%)||6 (0.3%)||5 (0.2%)|
Each of the five listed buildings on the Heritage at Risk register are within designated Conservation Areas. In addition, the Church of St Peter at Edensor also falls within the boundaries of Chatsworth’s Grade I Registered Park and Garden. The condition of each of the five listed buildings at risk is currently considered to be either ‘poor’ or ‘very bad’ (see table below).
Status and Condition of Listed Buildings at risk 2019/20
|Listed Building||Status||Condition||Principal Vulnerability|
|Church of St Peter, Edensor – rebuilt 1867 with fabric dating from C12 and C15||Listed Building grade I||Poor - slow decay with no solution agreed||Rainwater goods need renewing and roofs need recovering; fundraising ongoing|
|Critchlow Monument, Sheen – chest tomb and railings c1853||Listed Building grade II*||Very Bad - slow decay with no solution agreed||Fragment losses to north face; railings have deteriorated and been lost, jeopardising stability|
|The Wheldon School Michael Hutchinson Residential Centre, Hollinsclough – C18 converted barn||Listed Building grade II*||Poor - slow decay with no solution agreed||Uninhabitable due to internal flooding; renewed rainwater goods and fabric repairs needed|
|Church of St Mary, Tissington – Medieval C12 church partially rebuilt 1854||Listed Building grade II*||Poor - Slow decay with no solution agreed||Localised damp staining and the nave roof needs re-slating|
|Church of St Edmund, Castleton – C12 origin||Listed Building grade II*||Poor - Slow decay; solution agreed but not yet implemented||Internal damp, blocked drains and poor rainwater disposal; funds have been raised and work is due to commence / has begun|
Each building at risk building is subject to a number of factors and differing levels of investment in resource and time. Many of these factors are also likely to influence the condition and significance of listed buildings in future, including maintenance and ownership, development or commercial pressures, and the scarcity of traditional building techniques and materials. Changes in farming practices is one of the key factors for redundancy in historic agricultural buildings.
Climate change may also be a significant threat to the future of listed buildings. Listed buildings are likely to face direct impacts as a result of changing climactic and weather conditions, as well as indirectly, through potentially harmful adaptation and mitigation measures .
Buildings or structures are removed from the Register when they are fully repaired or consolidated, and their future secured through either occupation or use, or through the adoption of appropriate management.
# There are currently no registered parks and gardens at risk within the Peak District National Park
Parks and gardens considered to be of special historic interest are designated and graded on the same scale as listed buildings, into Grade I, Grade II* and Grade II. There are currently over 1,600 registered parks and gardens listed in England .
There are four registered parks and gardens within the Peak District National Park National Park; Chatsworth Hall, Haddon Hall, Lyme Park and Thornbridge Hall. This number has been static for some time.
Registered Parks and Gardens in the Peak District National Park National Park 2015 - 2020
|Registered Parks and Gardens||2015/16||2016/17||2017/18||2018/19||2019/20|
Haddon Hall (Grade I): Terraced gardens and features and parkland dated C16-C18, with likely earlier origins. Registered in 1984. The c62ha includes Grade I Haddon Hall itself and a variety of other Grade II* and Grade II listed buildings, including bridges, stone steps, a gatehouse, stable block, and dovecote
Chatsworth House (Grade I): Formal gardens and pleasure grounds dated c1688-1703, with later C18 and C19 remodelling, and a landscape park dated c1655-65 with C17 origins. Registered in 1984, and includes within it a number of Grade I, II*, and II listed buildings, most obviously Chatsworth House itself. It is c405ha in size covering four parishes: Chatsworth, Edensor, Beeley, and Baslow and Bubnell
Lyme Park (Grade II*): Medieval deer park (originally established 1359) and gardens and pleasure grounds, dating from C17-C20, in total covering c560ha. Registered in 1985. Includes number of listed buildings such as Grade I Lyme Park
Thornbridge Hall (Grade II): Late C19 and early C20 park and gardens to Grade II listed building Thornbridge Hall, covering c48ha. Registered in 1993
There are currently 0 registered parks and gardens at risk within the Peak District National Park.
# The are 109 Conservation Areas in the Peak District National Park
A Conservation Area is an area of the built environment that is considered to have sufficiently special architectural or historic interest as to warrant preservation or enhancement. Nationally there are around 10,000 designated Conservation Areas in the UK. Each has a unique character shaped by a combination of elements including buildings, materials, spaces, trees, street plan, history and economic background.
There are 109 Conservation Areas within the Peak District National Park National Park, including large settlements such as Castleton, Hathersage and Bakewell, and smaller estates like Edensor and Thornbridge Hall. They also include historic parks and gardens like Lyme Park, and industrial and transport sites such as Lode Mill in Milldale and Grindleford Station . Edale is by far the largest Conservation Area and like other places such as Chelmorton and Calton, the relationship of the settlement to the surrounding fields is an important component of the Conservation Area.
Map of Conservation Areas in the Peak District National Park 2020
# Conservation Area Appraisals
Conservation Area Appraisals are undertaken in order to identify the special qualities that make a place worthy of designation. The designation of a Conservation Area introduces some additional controls, in planning terms. The appraisals help us to look at ways in which the character of a place can be preserved or enhanced and are intended to inform future changes, not prevent them altogether .
In the Peak District National Park 103 Conservation Areas out of a total of 109 have adopted appraisals. 23 of these are in Historic England’s current recommended appraisal format and up-to-date, and a further 80 are in an earlier format, usually much less detailed. There are still 6 Conservation Areas that the Peak District National Park Authority has yet to prepare an appraisal for.
# There are no Conservation Areas at Risk
There are currently no Conservation Areas in the Peak District National Park National Park listed on the Heritage at Risk Register. However, there are two scheduled monuments listed as at risk within Conservation Areas. These are Alport Smelt Mill in Alport Conservation Area, and Bailey Hill motte and bailey castle, which is partly in High Bradfield Conservation Area. All five listed buildings currently at risk are within Conservation Areas [5:1].
Individually designated assets at risk may not pose a direct threat to the designation of Conservation Areas. However, depending on the setting and level of deterioration, they do have the potential to impact on the wider historic character and variety of features that contribute to the designation of the area in the first place .
# 473 Scheduled Monuments within the Peak District National Park
Nationally important archaeological sites and monuments are designated as Scheduled Monuments. There are almost 20,000 Scheduled Monuments currently listed, although scheduling is carefully restricted to the most important examples of each type of monument. Not all designated monuments are archaeological remains . In rare cases, buildings or structures can be both listed and scheduled.
There are 473 scheduled monuments within the Peak District National Park National Park, collectively reflecting the human activity that can be traced back for millenia [1:1]. This is evidenced by Neolithic burial mounds, Bronze Age settlements sites and field systems, stone circles, Iron Age hill forts, medieval settlements and field systems, leadworking sites, through to modern and industrial 20th-century sites such as quarries and collieries.
Some of the Peak District National Park’s most iconic sites and features are scheduled monuments. This includes Magpie Mine, Peveril Castle (both also listed buildings), Carl Wark hill fort, Fox Hole Cave, Edale Cross, and Arbor Low and Nine Ladies stone circle.
# 1 in 10 of Scheduled Monuments are at Risk
There are nine scheduled monuments within the Peak District National Park are currently on the Heritage at Risk register (see figure 7). The Peak District National Park’s 1.5% of total scheduled monuments at risk is considerably lower than the English National Park average of 8.2%. The percentage of scheduled monuments at risk within the Peak District National Park was actually the lowest across all ten English National Parks, despite having the fourth highest number of scheduled monuments in total [5:2]. However, the variability in these figures may also reflect differing certainty of knowledge. We are not able to visit all scheduled monuments regularly, and so some information on the condition of monuments may be quite out of date.
Scheduled Monuments at Risk in the Peak District National Park National Park 2014 - 2020
|Total no. at risk||6 (1.3%)||7 (1.5%)||6 (1.3%)||7 (1.5%)||7 (1.5%)||9 (1.9%)|
The trends for two of the sites are listed as improving, Bailey Hill and Ecton Copper Mines – both these sites have active management plans or oversight. Ecton Copper Mines has been the subject of a recent restoration project and only one structure at this large site (the balance cone) still requires repair.
Alport Smelt Mill, and Bailey Hill motte and bailey castle also both fall within the boundaries of Conservation Areas . Two bowl barrows at Merryton Low near Onecote have also been added in the last year. These suffered from the almost complete loss of vegetation in a moorland fire in 2018 and became extremely vulnerable to erosion. The Peak District National Park Authority is actively working with the MoD to protect the barrows; they have been surveyed and stabilised. We are also working to address the badger damage on the Stanshope barrow, and bracken growth at Callow prehistoric settlement.
Scheduled Monuments at risk in the Peak District National Park National Park 2019/20
|Scheduled Monument||Site Type and Subtype||Condition||Principal Vulnerability||Trend|
|Castle Hill motte and bailey castle, High Bradfield||Defence / Castle||Generally satisfactory but with significant localised problems||Animal burrowing (moderate)||Declining|
|Bailey Hill motte and bailey castle, High Bradfield||Defence / Castle||Generally unsatisfactory with major localised problems||Plant growth||Improving|
|Cowell Flat prehistoric field system, Bradfield||Religious ritual and funerary – Cairn||Generally unsatisfactory with major localised problems||Plant growth||Declining|
|Copper mines on Ecton Hill, Wetton||Industrial – Mining industry site||Generally satisfactory but with minor localised problems||Scrub and tree growth||Improving|
|Alport smelt mill, Harthill||Industrial – Metal industry site||Extensive significant problems||Scrub and tree growth||Declining|
|Bowl barrow 450 metres east of Stanshope, Alstonefield||Religious ritual and funerary – Barrow||Generally unsatisfactory with major localised problems||Extensive animal burrowing (Badger)||Declining|
|Callow prehistoric settlement & field system, Carr Head Moor, Hathersage||Agriculture and subsistence||Extensive significant problems||Scrub and tree growth||Declining|
|Merryton Low bowl barrow, Onecote / Fawfieldhead||Religious ritual and funerary – Barrow||Extensive significant problems||Vehicle damage and erosion (limited / localised)||Declining|
|Bowl barrow 350m south west of Merryton Low, Onecote||Religious ritual and funerary – Barrow||Extensive significant problems||Extensive natural erosion||Declining|
Archaeological entries are removed from the register once sufficient progress has been made to address the identified issues and vulnerabilities (e.g. a Management Plan agreed) and once a significant reduction in the level of risk has been demonstrated .
What are the gaps in our research & data?
- Remote sensing and photogrammetry: Developments in archaeological techniques such as Lidar (airborne remote sensing), has a huge potential for enhancing and refining our understanding of landscape history, and recording unknown heritage ./img, as well as monitoring landscape and vegetation change. A Citizen Science approach to analysing this data on a landscape scale could be beneficial (see Section 4).
- Protection through partnership: partnership working will become increasingly important. For example, partnering with others to research and investigate sites that can be put forward for designation.
- Monitoring and Heritage at Risk: There is a key role for volunteers to help with the monitoring of designated sites. There is some capacity-building work to be done, to co-ordinate the efforts of multiple organisations and streamline data capture. Digital field-data capture would greatly enhance this process.
- Understanding the effectiveness of planning policy: Further research is needed to quantify the enhancement or protection of landscape and built environment features through the monitoring of relevant planning policies.
- Effects of changing agricultural management: Prompted by the development of the new environmental land management scheme (ELM) and potential changes in farming and agricultural practices, we need to understand how effective heritage protection has been in the past and how/if it can be improved for future schemes. We also need to better understand and articulate the ‘value’ of heritage and the role(s) heritage can play in the delivery of ‘public goods’.
Historic England: https://historicengland.org.uk/advice/hpg/has/locallylistedhas/ ↩︎
Historic England: https://historicengland.org.uk/advice/heritage-at-risk/ ↩︎
Historic England: https://historicengland.org.uk/advice/hpg/has/listed-buildings/ ↩︎
Historic England: Foresight and the Historic Environment, 2015 ↩︎
Historic England: https://historicengland.org.uk/listing/what-is-designation/registered-parks-and-gardens/ ↩︎
Historic England: https://www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/looking-after/living-and-working/your-community/conservation-areas ↩︎
Historic England: advice note on CAs 2019 ↩︎
Historic England: Advice Note 1 Conservation Area Appraisal, Designation and Management ↩︎
Historic England: https://historicengland.org.uk/advice/hpg/has/scheduledmonuments/ ↩︎
Historic England: Heritage at Risk Register: https://historicengland.org.uk/advice/heritage-at-risk/search-register/ ↩︎
Historic England: https://historicengland.org.uk/advice/heritage-at-risk/search-register/selection-criteria/ ↩︎