The Department for Culture, Media and Sport is consulting on ways of reducing the regulatory burden of the current Listed Building Consent system (LBC).
The consultation sets out four options for changing the current system, to reduce the burdens on both those who wish to carry out works to listed buildings and on the authorities who have to implement the regime:
- A system of prior notification. This would involve the owner of the listed building giving notice of proposals for works to the LPA. The LPA could require a request for a full LBC application, but in the absence of such a request, the LBC would be deemed granted in respect of the works that had been notified.
- A system of class consents. This option would confer powers on LPAs to issue a general consent for a particular class or classes of works that could be carried out in an area, or to a particular type of property, without a need for a separate application for LBC. The Secretary of State would be given a similar power that could be used where the properties affected lie in more than one local authority area.
- The power to grant a certificate of lawful works (CLW). A CLW would specify the works carried out to a listed building that are certified as lawful without LBC. A CLW could be granted in respect of either proposed works or works that had already been carried out. The idea behind this proposal is to reduce the number of applications for LBC, because the owners of listed buildings could find out if an LBC application is actually needed.
- Accredited agents replacing local authority office recommendations. This option would allow applicants for LBC to commission independent accredited agents. The agents would then make technical recommendations to the LPA, taking over some of the work that currently falls on the LPA. The LPA would still take the decision on whether to grant LBC.
The consultation closes on 23 August 2012 and a copy of the consultation document can be found by clicking on the following link