Finding a listed building

If you want to do building work in your home or are moving to a new house where you plan to do building work, you can check if it's a listed building.

Identifying a listed building

Listed buildings have ‘special architectural or historic interest’.  Buildings are graded according to original features or unaltered architectural styles. To protect the character and appearance of a listed building, planning permission is restricted. 

Listed Building Consent

Before anyone can alter a listed building, they must apply to the local council for Listed Building Consent. To make a decision about granting or refusing consent, the council consults the Historic Environment Division in the Department for Communities .

Grading of listed buildings

Listed buildings in Northern Ireland are divided into four categories to give an indication of their relative importance. Gradings in Northern Ireland (unlike elsewhere in the UK) are not statutory. 

Grade A

Special buildings of national importance include grand buildings and the fine, little altered examples of some important style or date.

Grade B+

Special buildings that might have merited A status but have minor detracting features such as impurities of design, or lower quality additions or alterations. This grade also applies to buildings that stand out from grade B1 buildings because of exceptional interiors or some other features.

Grade B1 and B2

Special buildings of more local importance or good examples of some period of style. Some degree of alteration or imperfection may be acceptable.

Local Landscape Policy Area

Historic buildings in Northern Ireland may also have some protection as a result of their location in a Conservation Area, Area of Townscape or Village Character or inclusion as a building of local importance within a Local Landscape Policy Area.

This information appears on the current local area plan for your location. As conservation areas can be designated independently of the planing process, you should check with your council’s planning office.

Northern Ireland Buildings Database

To find out if a building is listed in Northern Ireland, you can search the Northern Ireland Buildings Database. This has information on all listed buildings as well as information on buildings recorded since 1997 that do not meet the statutory test.

The Statutory List has information on buildings that have not been reviewed since 1997. The list is a paper record. You can read the list at the Northern Ireland Monuments and Buildings Record and in local council offices. 

Staff in the Historic Environment Division can tell you if a structure is listed.

Heritage Buildings Designation Branch
Historic Environment Division
Klondyke Building
Cromac Avenue
Gasworks Business Park
Ormeau Road
Belfast
BT7 2JA
  • enquiries: 028 9082 3177 or 028 9082 3126
  • listing: 028 9056 9281
Monuments and Buildings Record
Historic Environment Division
Klondyke Building
Cromac Avenue
Gasworks Business Park
Ormeau Road
Belfast
BT7 2JA
  • enquiries: 028 9056 9701

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