Buying a listed property in St Helens - key things to know?

The dream of owning a listed building is an alluring one. However, the reality can be something of a rough ride. If you are intending to buy a listed building in St Helens, here are the things to be aware of.

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Listed house window Merseyside

First steps

The starting point is to look into what designation of listed building the property you intend to buy is. The grade will help describe what your obligations will be.

Grade I

Grade I are buildings of exceptional interest

Grade II*

Grade II* buildings are particularly important and of more than special interest.

Grade II

Grade II are buildings that are of special interest, warranting every effort to preserve them.

What are the restrictions?

The regulations governing listed buildings exist to preserve the architectural or historic interest of the property. These controls prevent alterations that do not have the necessary consent (for example replacement of gutttering) to the listed parts of the building.

Typical examples of what specifically might be listed include anything from doors to chimneys.

Can I make alterations to a listed building

Planning permission and listed building consent from St Helens Borough Council for any changes will be required by the owner of a home with listed building status.

What if alterations have already been made?

The appropriate consents should exist if the listed building has previously been altered.

Owning a listed property without listed building consent for any alterations or extensions is considered an offence, and the liability for ensuring the appropriate consents are in place will be assumed by the buyer.

What will the purchaser need to do to fulfil their obligations?

Owners of listed buildings in St Helens will need to keep the home well-maintained.

The local authority can take formal action if you do not look after the property and permit it to decay, ending in compulsory purchase.

The works must usually be undertaken in a period-specific manner, e.g. slate roofing.

Find listed buildings in St Helens

Somewhere in the region of 500,000 listed properties exist across the country, and around 165 of which are in St Helens Borough Council.

St Helens listed buildings and properties include:

  • Former Pilkingtons Headquarters Complex, Borough Road, St Helens, Non Civil Parish, St Helens, St. Helens
  • Beechams Clock Tower And Offices, Westfield Street, St Helens, St. Helens
  • Church Of All Saints, Ellamsbridge Road, St Helens, St. Helens
  • Cowley High School, South Block, Cowley Hill Lane, St Helens, St. Helens
  • New Double Lock On The Sankey Canal, Lock Street, St Helens, St. Helens

Complete listings can be found on the Historic England website

Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher

About the author

Gaynor Haliday is an experienced legal researcher and published author. She has had numerous articles published in the press and is a legal industry commentator.

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