Bid to list local heritage assets is successful

A joint bid by Dorset Council and BCP Council for funds to create a list of local heritage assets has been successful. A total of £70,000 has been secured from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG).

The money will fund a project to create a Local Heritage List for each council. The lists will be compiled using information gathered from Dorset residents and local partners through a digital form. The information will be available online and used in planning decisions affecting identified assets across the county.

The scheme will start with a public survey to collect communities’ views on the campaign and their local heritage. This information will be used, alongside Historic England guidance, to help shape the criteria for inclusion on the Local Heritage Lists and nominate buildings, monuments, sites, places, areas and landscapes.

An extensive and wide-ranging Community Engagement Strategy will involve local people, of all ages and backgrounds, to understand what they value about their local heritage and why, and what threats it faces.

The campaign will leave in place a process for keeping the Lists updated with new nominations according to a clear set of criteria or to reflect other changes to the identified assets.

The Local Heritage Lists will be easily accessible through a public free-to-use interactive mapping platform, which will be updated as changes and additions are made. The lists will also be made accessible through the authority websites as an illustrated document and added to the Dorset Historic Environment Record.

Cllr David Walsh, Dorset Council’s Portfolio holder for Planning, said:

“This is great news. It is very important that we help to promote and protect local heritage and forge stronger connections between people and their local areas, at a time when we are reconnecting with what surrounds us and valuing it more than ever.”

Councillor Philip Broadhead, BCP Council Portfolio Holder for Regeneration, Economy and Strategic Planning and Deputy Leader of the Council said:

“We are really pleased to be working together with our colleagues at Dorset Council on this great project, which will engage our local communities in highlighting what local heritage they value near them.

“It’s really timely to be recognising what we have on our doorsteps, after a year of restrictions meaning many of us have stayed local.

Dorset’s economy relies on our historic towns, seaside resorts, villages and landscapes to draw hundreds of thousands of tourists every year – it’s part of what makes our area so special.”

The project is due to start later this year.

Posted on Thursday 25 March 2021