Cheshire Local Heritage List
Award of £70,000 to create the local list
Over the next two years, Cheshire West and Chester Council’s Conservation and Design team will be reviewing and expanding the legacy Local Lists of Vale Royal and Ellesmere Port and Neston and expanding Local List coverage to the former Chester City area. A local heritage list identifies buildings, monuments, sites, places, areas, historic parks and gardens or other landscapes that are important to local communities and play a role in community identity.
Cheshire West and Chester Council, in partnership with Cheshire East and Halton Council have been awarded £70,000 by the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government (now the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities), to start work creating a Cheshire Local List. The Government has awarded 22 projects across the country.
Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council said: “What is your definition of heritage? The idea behind the Cheshire Local List is that it will identify what is important to residents. In addition to the normal criteria such as age, rarity and architectural interest, this list will also consider features that are ‘making history’.
“Heritage doesn’t have to be old; we want to include features that are important to new and changing communities on the Cheshire Local List. The Local List is used in the planning system to highlight buildings, landscapes and other features that play a significant role in community identity and history.”
The partnership will be working with Headland Design Associates (HDA) on 15 focus areas. In west Cheshire there are five target areas: Ince & Elton, Ellesmere Port, Hoole, Broxton parish and Shocklach Oviatt parish. In these areas, HDA will work with local volunteers to identify locally significant heritage assets and develop them as proposals for the Local List.
In addition to this, the Councils’ Built Environment Officers will be working with other communities and interest groups, including the Gardens Trust, Chester Civic Trust and The Campaign for Real Ale, to develop Local List proposals from their existing research. There will also be a series of public workshops focussed in and around central Chester and Crewe.
The Cheshire Local List gives importance to local heritage in the planning system but is also a space for expression of community identity, both through the list itself and through engagement in the research and designation process. It is a key component of conservation area management and Neighbourhood Plan development, allowing for better understanding of and appreciation for the heritage of the county and its communities.
This approach compliments existing Listed Buildings categories by identifying additional local heritage that is significant to local people.
The new Exegesis Local Heritage List Platform (LHLP) will be used to create and host the 22 projects on individual, dedicated, branded websites for each of the funded Local Heritage List projects. Once established, the LHLP will also then be available to Councils that are not included in the current funded campaign.
More information on the Cheshire Local List project and how to get involved in it can be found on the project website: https://local-heritage-list.org.uk/cheshire after registering, new submissions can be made and the list can be viewed on a map (or in a table).