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Locations across Scotland served by

Hilston & Bennet Bespoke Joinery and Windows

We specialise in listed buildings and conservation areas. As leaders in the field, we understand the importance of these cherished spaces and the rules that govern their care.

A Guide to Conservation Areas in Scotland

Conservation areas are defined as “areas of special architectural or historic interest, the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance,” according to Section 61 of the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997. These areas play a pivotal role in maintaining the historical and architectural fabric of the region. There are over 600 conservation areas in Scotland, reflecting a wide range of historical contexts—from historic lands and battlefields to public parks, designed landscapes, and railways. Most commonly, however, they encompass groups of buildings extending over parts of a village, town, or city.

These conservation areas were largely designated in the early 1970s, with many adjustments made since then, including redesignation, merging, renaming, and boundary changes. New conservation areas have also been added over time. The main goal of these designated areas is to safeguard their unique character for the enjoyment and benefit of future generations. As such, any new development within these areas must preserve or enhance their distinct historical and architectural features.

Designation Process

The responsibility for designating conservation areas lies with the planning authority. This body must determine which parts of its area are of special architectural or historic interest and may designate these as conservation areas. Typically, the public is consulted on any proposals to designate new conservation areas or change existing boundaries, ensuring community involvement and transparency in the process.

Challenges and Opportunities

Managing a property or planning a development within a conservation area comes with its own set of challenges and opportunities. Property owners must navigate specific planning controls and constraints, which often require more detailed applications and can include restrictions on demolition, alterations, and even the painting of exterior surfaces.

However, living or investing in a conservation area also brings numerous benefits, including the preservation of community character, protection against inappropriate development, and often a boost to property values due to the desirable nature of these locations.

Our Expertise

At Hilston and Bennett, we offer a wealth of expertise in navigating the complexities associated with conservation areas and listed buildings. Our team provides guidance on the appropriate methods for renovation and construction, ensuring all works are sensitive to the historic environment while meeting modern standards of comfort and energy efficiency. We also assist in liaising with the necessary regulatory bodies and in preparing the detailed documentation required for planning applications and listed building consents.

For anyone involved in maintaining, renovating, or developing properties in these areas, understanding the specific requirements and historical significance of the site is crucial. By choosing to work with specialists like us, you ensure that your project respects the past while accommodating the needs of the present and future.

Read the full article on conservation areas in Scotland and learn more about how you can contribute to preserving the nation’s heritage while enjoying the unique character of these historic locales.

Click here to read the article.


Glasgow & Lanarkshire



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