Lightning protection

Historic England recommends that lightning protection is considered for all churches, and tall or prominent historic buildings. However there is no system that will give absolute protection, and the significance of a building needs to be balanced against providing an acceptable level of protection.

Historic England’s guidelines are:

  • A risk assessment should be carried out
  • Proper consultation with the appropriate authorities or denominational bodies is essential
  • Archaeological supervision of ground-disturbing work may be needed
  • A tower-only system is likely to provide acceptable protection in most cases
  • The aesthetic appearance of the lightning protection system needs to be carefully considered
  • Systems need to be professionally designed, installed and maintained

Historic England’s Lightning protection guidance provides advice on the design, installation and maintenance of lightning protection systems. The guidance includes briefing on the British Standard European Norm BS EN 62305, risk assessments and what is relevant for historic buildings.

There is also a section on Surge Protection Devices (SPDs).

Lightning protection is specialist work and requires expert design and installation.

Learn more

View the 2020 webinar: Buildings at risk: lightning protection for historic buildings and churches

Lightning strikes to historic buildings can cause serious damage. This webinar looks at the development of lightning protection standards, the cause and effect of lightning strikes and how to apply the new British Standards to listed and heritage buildings. The presentation also looks at the individual components that make up a lightning protection system and how they work.

For the best webinar experience please use Google Chrome browser or download Adobe Connect.

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