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Historic environment records

The Historic Environment (Wales) Act 2016

Historic Environment (Wales) Act 2016

Stand-alone provisions in the 2016 Act place a duty on the Welsh Ministers to compile and maintain a historic environment record for each Welsh local authority area. The existing regional historic environment records have been asked to discharge this duty on the Welsh Ministers’ behalf.

The Act specifies that each historic environment record for a local authority area must provide information (or access to information) on:

  • listed buildings
  • conservation areas
  • scheduled monuments
  • registered historic parks and gardens
  • conflict sites of historic interest
  • historic landscapes
  • World Heritage Sites
  • sites of local historic archaeological or architectural interest
  • development of the area’s character and how it may be preserved
  • details of historical, archaeological or architectural investigations in the area and their findings
  • historic place names.

The historic environment records, therefore, give local authorities and other land managers the information and evidence needed for informed decisions on the historic environment. T

The Act requires the Welsh Ministers to make each historic environment record available for public inspection in a manner they consider appropriate. The Archwilio website provides public access to the historic environment records for each local authority area. The Act also make specific provision for the copying of parts of the historic environment records, assistance with retrieving and understanding information and the compilation of retrieved information. A fee may be charged for the costs of such services.

The legislation also directs that statutory guidance on the compilation and use of the records must be issued for local and National Park authorities and Natural Resources Wales. Historic Environment Records: Compilation and Use was published on 10 April 2017 and is available for download.