All change for conservation area consents and immunity orders in heritage legislation

June 7, 2012

Changes to the heritage protection regime are on the way following publication of the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill sponsored by the Department of Business. Many of the proposed changes have been in discussion for some years and English Heritage has welcomed the arrival of legislation to deliver improvements to the system.

The bill seeks to fundamentally change the Heritage List for England so that the extent of a building's special interest would be legally defined in its list entry – only these elements would then be protected by law. This alone presents English Heritage with a major undertaking, given that there are 375,000 listed buildings in England.

Conservation area consent will be brought back into the local planning system with a new unified approach that will end the need for a separate conservation area demolition consent. Under the new regime, demolition will only be considered as part of a new application for planning permission and there will be a new offence for failing to obtain permission prior to any demolition work.

To reduce the burden on the planning system, owners of listed buildings will be able to enter into Statutory Management Agreements with local authorities to enable specified works to be undertaken without the need for repeat planning applications.

And to give developers greater protection against unanticipated protection orders, the bill proposes that they will be able to apply for a Certificate of Immunity (COI) from listing or scheduling before they have committed to design work. Under the current system, a COI can only be issued after a planning application has been made. 

RIBA Practice Bulletin No. 647

Extensions, Loft Conversions and Adding Value to Your Home

May 15, 2012
More and more people are deciding to improve their homes rather than move, taking the view that there is plenty of scope in adding to the value of their home for longer-term gain through carefully considered extensions, upgrades and installations. Why move and pay huge amounts of stamp duty, legal fees, estate agents fees and removal costs when, with a bit of creative thinking, you can invest this money to make your current house the home you have always dreamed of.
A  well-planned and execute...
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New Self Build Portal Launched

April 26, 2012

Grant Shapps, the minister for housing and self-proclaimed self-build enthusiast, hosted a celebrity 'workshop' at 10 Downing Street last week to highlight new support measures for self-builders and to make a pledge to double the size of the bespoke homes sector.

The event saw the launch of a new one-stop Self Build Portal that brings together sources of advice and a progress report from the National Self Build Association (NaSBA), which drew up an action plan last year at the request of the...

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Warmer Homes

April 6, 2012

The Green Building Store has just launched some extremely useful new resources on low energy retrofits, which aim to help householders make well-informed decisions for improving the energy efficiency of their homes.

The resources include case studies of typical hard-to-treat homes in West Yorkshire and also offer guidance on developing 'whole house plans' and ventilation strategies. 

Click here to download

Click on the You Tube link below to watch computer animations showing examples of best pra...

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Neighbourhood Planning and the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF)

March 7, 2012

The Government’s new planning reforms (NPPF) will result in a presumption in favour of ‘Sustainable Development’ and present a huge opportunity for commercial developers and house builders, as long as they are able to demonstrate the sustainable credentials of a scheme and a willingness to engage with local neighbourhoods at the planning stage.

Projects that have been previously refused and even dismissed at appeal also promise to be reincarnated, again, as long as the schemes sustainabl...

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Consumer Guide to Buying Replacement Windows and Doors

March 2, 2012

If you’re looking to buy new windows and doors, then here a few hints and tips to make sure you choose the best company to install your new home improvement products.

1.0       Recommendations

As with all building work, picking a company to install your windows and doors requires you placing your trust in a company you may never have used or even heard of before. That is why it is a good idea to use a company that has been recommended to you by word of mouth. It needs to be someone recommende...

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£24k For Ashburton Householders To Show Us Their Hotspots

February 17, 2012

An Ashburton initiative has won thousands of pounds of Government funding to explore how local homes can go much greener.

Local residents are being urged to “Show us your hotspots” and take part in the study – which will arm all Ashburton householders with expert knowledge to help make their homes cosier and their energy bills smaller.

The money will also pay for 100 residents to take a day trip to a national green building centre to see for themselves the best way to improve their h...

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Part L carbon reduction target drops from 25% to 8% for 2013

February 2, 2012

"The Government launched its long-awaited consultation on proposed changes to the Building Regulations this week, setting out a number of proposals designed to boost energy efficiency.

The Government has has made great efforts to mitigate the cost impact on house builders of achieving Part L from next year by setting an improvement target of 8% in additional carbon savings compared to the 25% that the industry had been told to expect by the previous government. There is no plan to drop the obj...

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New homes. How to comply with the 2010 edition of Part F

January 24, 2012

A new publication explains how new homes can comply with the 2010 edition of Part F, which sets out strategies that should, if executed correctly, ensure good ventilation regardless of the level of airtightness. The guide works through the possible solutions on a range of common house and apartment types, explains some of the terminology in Part F and gives a broad understanding of the changes this will entail in practice. It can be downloaded at

This guide is inte...

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BRE Proposals on SAP Methodology

January 12, 2012

BRE has just released its proposals on how the SAP methodology should be changed in line with the planned revision of Building Regulations in 2013; the next step towards proposed Zero Carbon houses by 2016.

It should be noted that this is consultation stage only.

There are eight key changes which may be relevant on upcoming housing developments.

This consultation only applies to the calculations used for producing SAP assessments and EPC's. It does not cover Target Emission Rates, limiting U-Val...

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Jonathan Braddick - RIBA Architects Devon

Jonathan Braddick Jonathan Braddick is a RIBA Chartered Architect based in Devon, in Exmouth near Exeter. Jonathan is Chairman of the South West Region of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Jonathan is also founder and chairman of the Design Review Panel ( which provides impartially, independent, multidiciplinary design review / place review services to local authorities. In private practice, Jonathan offers a comprehensive Architects service: from conceptual design through to completion on site, and beyond. Jonathan practices throughout the South West and South East of England. Jonathan provides full Architect services across all project sectors and types, but his particular passion is for bespoke, ecologically sustainable, residential developments including: housing developments, individual house builds, conversions and high-end extensions for both developer and private clients. Jonathan Braddick is not just a designer, but has a strong focus on carrying projects through from inception to completion on site. Jonathan provides a high level of legislative and technical knowledge as well as specialist expertise in construction procurement and on site contract administration. Jonathan ensures that his designs respond to all relevant planning legislation, will comply with the building regulations, are constructionally cost effective and buildable on site. In house sustainability/energy efficient design is provided as a matter of course.

Copyright 2012  Jonathan Braddick  - RIBA Chartered Architect Devon    44a Waverley Road, Exmouth Devon EX8 3HJ    01395 265768