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At Stormclad, we’re incredibly lucky to have the beautiful Peak District National Park situated just an hours’ drive up the M1 from us. So, with an increased number of home improvement enquiries coming from this stunning part of the world, we thought it the perfect opportunity to explain the legalities of making alterations to properties located in conservation areas.

What does it mean to be in a conservation area?

British Conservation Areas are defined as:

“An area of special architectural or historic interest, the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance.”

As the UK’s first national park, the Peak District National Park is separated into 109 Conservation Areas.

There are also 32 Conservation Areas within the High Peak Borough District, including Glossop, Buxton, New Mills, Chapel-en-le-Frith and Whaley Bridge which are just on the fringe of the national park.

Peak district

Do you need planning permission in a conservation area?

The term ‘designated land’ covers land within a conservation area, areas of outstanding natural beauty and National Parks. Therefore, planning permission will generally need to be sought in the Peak District area.

With regards to property development, each planning application considers an area’s unique, special character and whether the redevelopment proposals will preserve or enhance the character or appearance of that conservation area.

Each Conservation Area is shaped by a combination of elements. These include:

  • Buildings
  • Materials
  • Spaces
  • Trees
  • Street plan
  • History
  • Economic background

Questions and answers: Peak District National Park planning advice for homeowners

Do I need permission to change windows in a conservation area?

If you’re planning a Peak District redevelopment, always bear in mind the following sentence: “to enhance and preserve the area.” As part of the wording of the Conservation Area legislation, this is what your local authority conservation officer will be assessing your application against.

The official advice points towards:

  • Retaining original windows, repairing wherever possible
  • Renew, if necessary, with exact replicas
  • Avoid modern-style windows
  • To improve thermal efficiency, draught strip existing windows or add secondary glazing.

Alterations & Extensions | What types of windows are suitable for improvements in the Peak District?

If your windows have gone beyond repair, maybe they’re buzzing in the wind or looking incredibly unattractive, authentic timber windows and timber doors are the ideal choice for homes in the Peak District. Or if you’re looking for the best of both worlds, The Residence Collection seamlessly combines classic timber sightlines with energy-efficient uPVC chambers. Approved in many conservation areas, Residence 9 windows have been specifically designed to replicate the gorgeous 19th Century timber window style; providing the ultimate solution for planners and homeowners throughout Derbyshire and beyond.

Timber windows in a white kitchen.

What could happen if I make unauthorised alterations to my home?

Back in November, a couple in the Peak District were ordered to pay £46,000 in fines and costs for making unauthorised alterations to a listed building. The contractor who carried out the work was also fined £250 and ordered to pay £1,000 costs for his part in the unlawful removal of “significant historic and architectural interest”.

High-quality Double Glazed Conservation Windows Derbyshire

Serving Bakewell to Castleton, Hathersage to Edale and everywhere in between, if you would like to know more about our conservation-friendly window frames, book a free design consultation, visit our extensive showroom or get in touch to discuss your options further with a seasoned professional.

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The Comprehensive Guide to Orangery Planning Permission

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