About our heritage assets
Brent's heritage assets include a wide range of architectural styles from Victorian Italianate, Gothic Revival, suburban 'Arts and Crafts', ‘Tudorbethan’, ‘Old World’, Modern and Brutalist.
It has historic formal public parks, gardens and cemeteries as well as planned ‘garden village’ estates but its archaeological discoveries from early prehistory are scarce.
The British Rail lines and the Metropolitan Railway enabled suburban 'Metroland' development. This was boosted by the British Empire Exhibition in Wembley Park in 1924/25. Many historic buildings within Brent reflect the styles of these times, but it also has examples of mandir architecture as well as ‘moorish’ and ‘Indo-Islamic’.
Heritage assets make a substantial contribution to Brent's local character and distinctiveness. They are a unique and irreplaceable resource which justifies protection, conservation and enhancement.
Brent’s statutory listed buildings, conservation areas and registered parks and gardens are all designated heritage assets. Locally listed buildings, areas of distinctive residential character, sites of archaeological importance and archaeological priority areas are non-designated heritage assets.
Brent’s heritage is valued as evidence of the past culture, providing a sense of belonging.
Statutory listed buildings
A statutory listed building is a building or structure that has been placed on the National Heritage list of buildings of special architectural or historic interest by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).
Check if you live in a listed building
Go to our planning searches database, select the Property tab, enter your property details and click on the Property Attributes tab to find out about your property.
Historic England maintains The National Heritage List which is a searchable database of all nationally designated heritage assets including Brent’s listed buildings and registered parks and gardens.
Listing these buildings identifies and acknowledges our shared history. It marks and celebrates a building or structures special architectural or historic interest, and also brings it under the management of the planning system so that consideration can be made about its future.
- Grade I buildings are of exceptional interest – Brent has one of these.
- Grade II* buildings are particularly important buildings of more than special interest - Brent has nine of these.
- Grade II buildings are of special interest. Brent has around 200 of these.
When a building is listed, all of the building itself (internally and externally), anything fixed to it and also most buildings and structures in its grounds are part of the listed building.
If you are considering undertaking any work to a listed building or structure it is likely that you will need listed building consent, in addition to any other permissions or approvals.
Listed building consent is required in order for Brent to make decisions that balance the site's architectural or historic significance against other issues.
You are therefore likely to need consent for:
- demolition of all or part of a listed building (including buildings and structures in the curtilage)
- alterations (including internal works) that affect the character of the building
- repairs that involve replacing important parts of the building's fabric or using different materials (such as replacing the roof).
It is an offence to carry out works to a listed building that affect its architectural or historic interest without the approval of Planning Services.
You could be liable to prosecution, and be made to rectify any changes you have made. The maximum penalty could include imprisonment and unlimited fines.
In Princess Road a Local Listed Building Consent Order has been granted which permits repairs to a number of listed properties. See which properties and the details of the Order below.
Locally listed buildings
Brent has identified a number non-designated heritage assets and included them on a Local List of Buildings or Structures of Architectural or Historic Interest.
Check if you live in a locally listed building
Use our planning searches database to find out if your property is locally listed.
These assets are known as locally listed and include monuments, sites, places, areas or landscapes identified as having a degree of significance meriting consideration in planning decisions.
Whilst not statutory listed, these buildings and structures are of good quality design or are historically significant.
They are important local landmark features in their own right and make a significant contribution to the character and appearance of their locality.
The inclusion on the local list simply means that we will take into account the heritage asset’s special local architectural or historic significance when considering a planning application.
A conservation area is a place of special architectural or historic interest which needs to be preserved.
Check if you live in a conservation area
Design guides and list of areas
Planning and Article 4 Direction
An Article 4 Direction is a special control which gives extra protection to a conservation area by removing some of the owner's planning development rights. These controls extend to areas such as trees near your property.
Archaeology is the study of the past through the material remains left by our ancestors. It can be the only source of information about large parts of the borough’s history. It is a finite, non-renewable and in many cases a very fragile resource, vulnerable to even slight changes to the site or structure.
The evidence can be buried or upstanding, deliberately constructed or the by-product of other activities. It can consist of a few artefacts or an ancient place name.
Archaeological sites and the information they contain cannot be restored once they have been lost. The government has recognised this through publication of National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) which provides guidance on the treatment of archaeological remains in the planning process.
Brent has seen comparatively little archaeological excavation since the war and there is the potential for more discoveries through the planning process. In the main, such excavations have been undertaken by the Wembley History Society and in recent years by the Museum of London, but finds have been limited. The most significant being a Bronze Age urn from Brent reservoir displayed at Brent Museum and Archives
Archaeological Priority Areas (APAs) and Sites of Archaeological Importance (SAI).
The council has identified four Archaeological Priority Areas (APAs) where there is significant known archaeological interest or potential for new discoveries. It has also identified 40 local Sites of Archaeological Importance (SAI). APAs and SAI are used to help highlight where development might affect heritage assets.
What it means if your property is in an APA or SAI
Archaeological areas and sites have been identified to help protect archaeological remains that might be affected by development. Sites will always need to be assessed for their archaeological potential when application is made for their redevelopment.
A desk-based assessment will usually be required to be submitted to the council in consultation with the Greater London Archaeological Advisory Service (GLAAS). However, for small residential householder applications it is advised that you contact the planning department to confirm if an assessment is necessary.
Desk-based assessments are reports that consider the likely survival of buried archaeological deposits on the site, the likely significance of such deposits and the impact on them of a proposal. They assess the archaeological potential of a site without requiring any fieldwork. Such reports should be undertaken by specialist archaeological consultant. Archaeological trial investigations (evaluations) may also need to take place before the application is determined or secured by condition on a planning consent.
It should be noted that archaeological remains are not only confined to the archaeological priority areas and sites of interest can be identified outside these zones.
The results of archaeological investigations can be requested from the council's planning department. Alternatively you can request the reports from the Greater London Historic Environment Record at Historic England.