Historic Environment Advice and Guidance in the Planning Process

The planning system has a key role in the conservation of our archaeological and built heritage. Appropriate development planning, development management and enforcement, can help to sustain vibrant communities, a strong economy, and realise the ongoing value of our historic environment.

Our responsibility to record, protect and provide advice on Northern Ireland’s historic environment requires that we provide advice to District Councils and Departmental planning authorities when they are;

  • preparing Local Development Plans
  • determining  planning applications with potential impacts on the  heritage assets we record and protect
  • investigating potential planning enforcement cases, with impacts on the heritage assets we record and protect

The detail of our planning role and the services standards we aim to provide, is set out in our Services and Standards Framework, a statement of our role and commitments in relation to development planning, development management and planning enforcement.

The circumstances in which HED are consulted upon applications affecting the historic environment, are set out in the Planning Act (Northern Ireland) 2011 and are further explained in the Consultation Guide: A guide to consulting HED on development management applications.

Published guidance is available, detailing how we develop advice on planning applications and land-use change that may have an impact upon the settings of heritage assets;

The Department’s advice to planning authorities may require various forms of archaeological works to be undertaken as part of planning applications or in advance of development. Further guidance on undertaking such works is available in the guide;

Guidance to help applicants and agents understand the type of information required for a Listed Building Consent application is available online. This will help applicants avoid common omissions which may result in a request for further information;

Guidance for applicants and consultants who are applying for planning permission within the protected area of a Scheduled Monument is also available;

We have also published a document to provide information supporting those who are involved in assessing the effects of plans on Northern Ireland’s historic environment;


Back to top