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Copeland Borough Council is currently preparing a new planning document to provide guidance on building improvement, maintenance and repair in conservations areas.  This will help to preserve the character of the borough’s conservation areas, keeping them attractive places to live and work.

Introduction - Conservation Areas

Conservation areas are parts of our towns and villages which are rich in historic buildings and features. Rustic vernacular buildings are just as much part of our heritage as classic architecture and the conservation areas of Copeland have both.  Conservation areas are defined in law as:

“Areas of special architectural or historic interest, the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance” (s69 Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990)

The Purpose of this Design Guide

The purpose of this Design Guide is to help property owners, designers and developers to achieve good, respectful design and thus protect the heritage that we share. It provides examples of authentic architectural components, that contribute to the streetscape of the conservation areas and demonstrate what should be retained, and how new building elements should be designed and constructed to sensitively make their contribution whilst not harming the historic environment.

Public Consultation

This Draft Design Guide will be subject to a statutory public consultation exercise, as it is council’s intention that the Guide will be incorporated within the Copeland planning framework, by being adopted as Supplementary Planning Document (SPD). 

SPDs are non-statutory documents which are not subject to an independent examination and do not have Development Plan status. However, they are subject to a thorough process of public consultation, in accordance with the council’s Revised Statement of Community Involvement (SCI) and must also be consistent with national and local planning policies. 

The Conservation Area Design Guide SPD will act as a material planning consideration for decision makers when determining planning applications within, or in close proximity to, the conservation area boundary.

The statutory public consultation will take place for six weeks from 9 am on Monday 10th July through to 5pm on Friday 18th August 2017.  Following public consultation, the draft Design Guide will be amended to take into account any relevant issues raised before being formally adopted as a SPD in December 2017.

Copies of the document, comment forms and sustainability appraisal are available to at Copeland Council Offices, libraries and available to download below.

Draft Conservation Area Design Guide SPD July 2017

- Comment Form

Sustainability Appraisal

For further information please contact the Planning Policy Team on 01946 598300


Published: 3 July 2017 - 11:21am