HC Deb 19 February 1996 vol 272 c46W
Ms Lynne

To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage (1) what research her Department has carried out into the impact on private property values of the listing of industrial premises; and what compensation is offered to the owners of a property that is listed; [14980]

(2) what research her Department has carried out into the extra costs placed upon businesses by the listing of industrial properties. [14979]

Mr. Sproat

My Department, English Heritage and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors have jointly commissioned three research studies into economic aspects of the listing of historic buildings. The performance of listed buildings in the investment property market was considered by the investment property databank—"The Investment Performance of Listed Buildings, November 1993"; a pilot study by Cambridge university's property research unit examined the effect of listing on the value of buildings—"The Listings of Buildings: The Effect on Value, May 1994"—and a recent study by Reading university's department of economics and DTZ Debenham Thorpe has investigated ways in which the wider benefits of listing and conservation might be valued and measured.

The first two studies provided evidence that while commercial buildings can experience a one-off drop in value at the time of listing, thereafter they perform as investments as well as, or better than, similar buildings which are not listed, even when extra costs of upkeep are taken into account. There is no provision for compensating owners of buildings that are listed—through in certain circumstances repairs grants may be available. Planning policy guidance note 15:"Planning and the Historic Environment" exhorts local planning authorities and applicants for listed building consent to adopt a flexible approach wherever possible to proposed changes to listed commercial buildings. In the forthcoming heritage Green Paper, we shall be consulting on a range of possible changes to listing and listed building control procedures.