The present crisis has a knock on impact on just about everything, and historic buildings are no exception. The lockdown has caused some unique challenges for heritage owners, and led to some unprecedented legal complexities.
Owners are obliged to maintain their buildings, but the lockdown has prevented almost every tradesman from working on site. Home repairs have not been given the same importance as new construction, leaving planned works uncompleted, and many owners unable to hire traders at any price.
The law presently tells owners that they must carry out repairs, and also that repair services are unavailable. We would hope that no council’s enforcement division will attempt to take action against owners in the present climate, but we should be concerned that there is no formal defence.
The Club are working to raise these issues at the highest levels, to allow listed building works to continue, and offer statutory protection for owners who are unable to carry out repairs.
To read the full story, see the latest issue of Listed Heritage, the Club’s 160 page bi-monthly magazine. Every issue includes a dedicated section on our lobbying efforts, as well as news, features and technical guidance from across the heritage sector.
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