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Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990
Grant Aid for Repair of Historic Buildings

Guidance Notes and Conditions

It is important to remember that all district councils have individual guidelines with regards to grant aid. In any case your local district council should be contacted to discuss any such grants before any work is carried out. It should be remembered also that the budget available towards such grants is often limited. As a result, claims are considered in terms of their significance and prioritised accordingly.
There are several points to consider for such grants but it should be remembered that these are only typical conditions and not mandatory guidelines.

i) The structural repair of the historic fabric of the building, or
ii) Work needed to preserve or restore features of special merit, or
iii) Repairs in traditional natural materials needed to protect the building from the weather.

In order for a grant to be offered the building must have been inspected by an officer from your local planning department before any work is started. If the work is urgent it may be possible for an officer to visit before you make an application. In any case you should ask for the officer who deals with Historic Building Grants.

Before you make any application it is important to note that grants are not normally considered for:

i) Repair work using non-traditional materials
ii) Repair to extensions or other such features that are not part of the original building
iii) Improvement or routine maintenance work
iv) Recently acquired property

In relation to the last point regarding recently acquired property, grants will not be offered within the preceding two years of an applicant taking over the responsibility for repairs. This includes all freehold, leasehold and tenancy agreements. It is that it is assumed that the price of the property should reflect the cost of any immediate repairs needed.

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How much can I expect?

In the case of Listed Buildings the amount offered is typically 13% of the total cost of repair works (inclusive of VAT) but with a maximum limit of £540. If the building is listed and within a Conservation Area this figure can increase to 17% of the total cost; in this case the total amount limit is £720. It should be emphasised that these figures are approximate and councils reserve the right to refuse applications or offer token amounts.

How long does a grant last?

Any work that has been offered a grant must be completed within one year of the date of issue. If for any reason the work or repair is not completed within this time you are required to reapply or request a renewal of the grant. It should be considered that the council is under no obligation to guarantee a renewal since grant finances are allocated annually. The grant year may run at a different time to the calendar year, for example April to the following March. Be sure to contact your District Council as soon as possible so as to organise any works to coincide with the

When is a grant issued?

The payment of a grant is made after the work has been completed and an inspection completed by your local planning office. If the inspector is satisfied that the work has been carried out in accordance to the grant application you will be asked to supply a copy of the bill and a receipt. If figures are deemed correct the council will issue a cheque.

If for any reason the final cost of the work is lower than estimated the council may reduce the grant proportionally. In the case of the bill being higher the council can only pay the original amount to start with. A full explanation would be required before any increase to the original grant is considered. It remains up to the discretion of the planning office considering available budget as to whether more money will be awarded. It should not be assumed that the council will offer more than the original agreed sum.

How to apply for a grant

When a claim is made the appropriate application form should be completed and sent to the District Council. Typically an application will be supplied with copies of the following documents: -

i) a fully detailed schedule of work prepared by a suitably qualified and experienced person
ii) Photographs of any repairs needed if appropriate
iii) At least two competitive quotes for the work showing an itemised costs

A District Council may exercise its power to reclaim all or part of the grant if you decide to sell your property within three years of the grant being issued. The amount that can be reclaimed is normally in relation to the time from the work being completed. For example the total amount could be reclaimed within twelve months, two-thirds within the second year and a third if the house is sold within the third year.



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