PPS 6: Planning, Archaeology and The Built Heritage
Annex C: Fixtures and Curtilage Structures
Please note: Annex C has been superseded by a revised Annex C which is available for download from the main PPS 6 hompage.
C14 Further guidance to what can be included on the list is given in Article 42(7) of the 1991 Planning Order. This article explains that the term “listed building” refers to any building included in the list and that the following is also treated as part of the building:
- any object or structure within the curtilage of the building and fixed to the building; and
- any object or structure within the curtilage of the building which, although not fixed to the building, forms part of the land and has done so since before 1 October 1973.
C15 The word “fixed” has the same connotation as in the law of fixtures, where any object or structure fixed to a building should be treated as part of it. It is a test therefore of fact in each case as to whether a structure is free-standing or physically fixed to the building. Generally it would be reasonable to expect some degree of physical attachment, the intention of which is to make the object an integral part of the land or building. Examples of fixtures to a building would normally include items such as chimney pieces, wall panelling and painted or plaster ceilings.
C16 It may be difficult however to decide whether a particular object or structure is a fixture or not. Free standing objects, such as statues, may be fixtures if they were put in place as part of an overall architectural design: this would include objects especially designed or made to fit in a particular space or room. But works of art which were placed in a building primarily to be enjoyed as objects in their own right, rather than forming part of the land or building, are not likely to be considered as fixtures. However, each case must be treated in the light of its own facts, and owners that contemplate works are advised to contact the Department.
C17 The listing of a building affords protection to those objects or structures contained within its curtilage which form part of the land and have done so since before 1 October 1973. Examples of such objects might include stables, mews buildings, garden walls, a gate lodge or stone setts. There is no exact legal definition of a building’s curtilage and this sometimes causes difficulties, but the following considerations may be of assistance in determining what is included within the curtilage:
- the historical independence of the building;
- the physical layout of the principal building and other buildings;
- the ownership of the buildings now and at the time of listing;
- whether the structure forms part of the land at present; and
- the use and function of the buildings, and whether a building is ancillary or subordinate to the principal building.
C18 Changes in ownership, occupation or use after the listing date will not bring about the delisting of a building which formed part of the principal building at the time of listing. Ancillary buildings which served the purposes of the principal building at the time of listing or at a recent time before the building was listed, and are not historically independent of the principal building, are usually deemed to be within the curtilage. Where a self-contained building was fenced or walled off at the date of listing, regardless of the purpose for which it was built or its use at the time of listing, it is likely to be regarded as having a separate curtilage. To be within the curtilage, the structure or building must still form part of the land at the time of listing, and this normally means that there must be some degree of physical connection to the land i.e. the curtilage building was part and parcel of the main property when it was listed. As with fixtures however this guidance does not purport to be definitive and the Department will often need to consider the facts of each case.