Sustainably retrofitting your home

Sustainable retrofitting is when existing buildings can be upgraded to be more energy efficient and use cleaner energy, for example in the form of solar PV panels. In a typical British home up to a third of the heat produced by central heating systems is lost through the roof, walls, floor and windows. For a poorly insulated property, this means that £1 out of every £3 spent on energy is wasted.

You can see how much heat your building is losing by viewing the Council’s heat loss map.

Guide to the Greening SPD

The Council wants to help and encourage those wishing to upgrade their homes and has produced a Householder Guide which can be found on the link below. We are also looking at Local Listed Building Consent Orders as a mechanism to help owners of listed buildings undertake common retrofit projects with greater ease. 

We have created a short guide for householders which sits alongside our Greening SPD. This guide focuses on matters that are applicable to householders in a shortened and simplified format. The Householder Guide to the Greening SPD is not a statutory planning document and is only intended to be used as a guidance document.

Works to Listed Buildings

Some works to buildings such as installing solar PV panels may not require planning permission particularly if the panels are placed discreetly. Further information can be found on the planning portal’s dedicated webpage. However, if a building is listed, it will normally require a listed building consent; the exceptions to this are set out below.

Local Listed Building Consent Orders

A Local Listed Building Consent Order (LLBCO) is a pro-active and blanket grant of listed building consent, by the Council, which means that owners of relevant listed buildings as specified in the LLBCO will not have to make individual applications to the Council. Instead, they will be able to proceed with the works, provided they comply with any conditions that may be attached to the Order.

LLBCO for the installation of solar panels

The Council has a LLBCO which allows the installation of solar PV panels on Grade II and most Grade II* buildings. The Order contains conditions to ensure that panels are sensitively designed and positioned on the building so that they would not have a harmful visual effect on the building itself or the wider area. Consent is granted subject to conditions specified in the Order.

Please see the full document for more information about the buildings to which this consent would apply, and a list of conditions that would need to be complied with.

Further information on how to submit the details required by condition vii) of the Order is available below.

Local Listed Building Consent Order for Window Works

The Council has now adopted a LLBCO covering certain works to windows in listed buildings. It allows the installation of secondary glazing to any window, and installation of double-glazed windows or double-glazed sealed units within existing frames in certain circumstances and providing certain conditions are complied with. These circumstances are where the window to be replaced or altered is itself a replacement or a new window in an extension, installed after the date of listing and with the benefit of listed building consent. The consented works apply to all Grade II buildings within the borough. Similar works to Grade II* and Grade I buildings would still require an application for listed building consent.

Please see the full document for more information about the buildings to which this consent would apply, and a list of conditions that would need to be complied with. No application for approval of details is required under the Order.  If you are unsure whether your planned window works would comply with the Order, or would like written confirmation that they do, we are able to advise through our pre-application service. You may also consider an application for a Certificate of Lawfulness of Works.

Last updated: 25 May 2023