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Managing registered historic parks and gardens

Wales has a rich inheritance of historic parks and gardens. Each is a unique source of information about the past: each has its own special story. They may contain valuable evidence about how and when they were created, how they were used, and how they have changed over time.

But registered historic parks and gardens continue to evolve. They cannot be frozen in time and change is often necessary to secure their long-term sustainability, especially as the impacts of climate change are better understood. Change can involve many types of activity ranging from routine maintenance to new work or alteration. Changes that are likely to affect registered historic parks and gardens or their settings may affect their significance and historic character. Whether change is desirable or necessary, it needs to be well managed so that our registered historic parks and gardens keep what is special about them, for the benefit of current and future generations.

Managing Change to Registered Historic Parks and Gardens in Wales sets out general principles to follow when considering changes that may have an impact on registered historic parks and gardens.

It explains the status of the register of historic parks and gardens in Wales and its place in the planning system, including the roles and responsibilities of owners, local planning authorities, amenity societies and Cadw. Although the register will become statutory later in 2019, registration does not introduce any new consent regimes.

This best-practice guidance is aimed principally at owners and agents to help them understand the implications of owning a registered historic park or garden and managing changes that affect it. It should also help owners and agents take account of Cadw’s Conservation Principles for the Sustainable Management of the Historic Environment in Wales (Conservation Principles) and use heritage impact assessment methodology to achieve high-quality sensitive change.

Managing Change to Registered Historic Parks and Gardens in Wales can also be used by owners and managers as a best-practice guide to caring for registered sites. The principles and practices are applicable to all historic parks and gardens in Wales, whether or not they are registered.

Decision-making authorities should also use this guidance alongside Planning Policy Wales, Technical Advice Note 24: The Historic Environment and Conservation Principles when considering the impact of individual planning applications on registered historic parks and gardens, and their settings.

Please note that although the statutory register does not come into force until later in 2019, Managing Change to Registered Historic Parks and Gardens in Wales has been published in advance to help owners and agents understand that registration does not impose any additional restrictions and how best to look after their registered historic park or garden.