Cookie Consent by Privacy Policies Generator website

Scheduled monuments

What are scheduled monuments?

Scheduled monuments are designated heritage assets.

Scheduling is our oldest heritage protection. It applies to man-made features both above and below ground. Some were first designated under the Ancient Monuments Consolidation and Amendment Act 1913 which has since been superseded by the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 ("the Act").

Section 1 of the Act refers to monuments which appear to be of national importance. ​It also states that such designation does not apply to any structure which is occupied as a dwelling house by any person other than a person employed as the caretaker thereof or his family.

Further information

Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 [external link]

How do I find a scheduled monument?

There are currently 19 scheduled monuments in Darlington Borough:

  • Archdeacon Newtown: moated site, deserted manorial settlement, rig and furrow
  • Bishopton: motte and bailey castle
  • Brafferton: Ketton Bridge
  • Coatham Mundeville: medieval village, fishpond, rig and furrow
  • Darlington: Coniscliffe Road waterworks
  • Great Burdon: World War II bombing decoy control shelter
  • Heighington: hillfort and tower mill on Shackleton Beacon Hill
  • High Coniscliffe: Smotherlaw round barrow
  • High Coniscliffe: deserted medieval village of Ulnaby
  • Middleton St. George: deserted village of West Hartburn
  • Middleton St.George: Tower Hill motte castle
  • Neasham: medieval moated manorial site of Low Dinsdale
  • Neasham: Anglo-Saxon cross in St John's churchyard
  • Neasham: pre-/post-Conquest church & graveyard, (post-)medieval manors at Sockburn
  • Piercebridge: Roman fort
  • Piercebridge: bridge
  • Sadberge: shrunken medieval village
  • Summerhouse: moated site, associated drainage channels, enclosure, field system
  • Walworth: deserted village

To find out whether you own or occupy (part of) a scheduled monument, please visit Historic England’s National Heritage List for England (NHLE) website. It is advisable to use the map-search function. The information provided on the NHLE includes the designation boundary, designation details and a basic description. 

Further information

The National Heritage List for England (NHLE) [external link]

How are monuments scheduled?

Scheduled monuments are designated by the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) (s1, Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979). The designation process is led by Historic England, the government's statutory adviser on the historical environment.

Anyone can nominate a monument to be scheduled. If you wish to do so, use Historic England's 'Apply for Listing' website.

Once you have submitted your application, the following will happen:

  1. Historic England will notify the Council (and other stakeholders like the owners of the property) about the proposed new scheduling and ask for comments.
  2. They will assess whether the proposal meets the DCMS's principles of selection for scheduled monuments (see Annex 1 in Scheduled Monuments & nationally important but non-scheduled monuments).
  3. After a consultation period, they will send a recommendation to the Secretary of State who will make the final decision.
  4. The Council and other stakeholder including yourself will be notified about the decision outcome.

Before you apply for scheduling, it is advisable that you familiarise yourself with Historic England’s Scheduling Selection Guides.

What effect does designation have?

Works to a scheduled monument will require Scheduled Monument Consent from the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport. These include:

  • demolishing, damaging, removing, repairing, altering or adding to a scheduled monument
  • carrying out any flooding or tipping operations on land in, on, or under a monument

Please note that some works may also require planning permission from the Council.

If you carry out any works without Scheduled Monument Consent, you are committing a criminal offence and may be fined. It is also a criminal offence to cause reckless or deliberate damage to a scheduled monument, or to use a metal detector or remove an object found with a metal detector from a protected site without consent.

It is Historic England who administer the application process. You will need to contact them in order to obtain Scheduled Monument Consent, see link on the left or below (depending on your device). The works carried out must comply with any conditions attached to the consent.

Monuments at risk

Scheduled moments can become ‘at risk’ when they are in a poor state of maintenance or damaged. 

Any 'monuments at risk' would be listed on Historic England's Heritage at Risk Register. There are currently none in Darlington borough.

Piercebridge Roman fort is classed as 'vulnerable' with declining trajectory and may become 'at risk' if it continues to deteriorate. 

Further information

This page was last updated in January 2024.

Install our web app.