Protocol for the Care of the Government Historic Estate

The Government is committed to setting a good example in the care of its historic estate. This Protocol sets out a consistent, coordinated approach to protecting all heritage assets through government departments’ procurement, estate management and disposal procedures.

The maintenance of heritage assets in active use and good repair is part of a sustainable approach to the environment. A strategic, systematic approach to the management of historic property will help to achieve value for money and conserve heritage assets in a manner appropriate to their significance, so that they can be enjoyed for their contribution to the quality of life for this and future generations.

The Protocol, previously issued in 2009 by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, explains how the government’s commitment to its heritage should be put into practice. It has been re-issued following consultation with departments. It should be read in conjunction with the relevant parts of the National Planning Policy Framework, which sets out the government’s overarching position on heritage in relation to the planning system.


  • Summary
  • Introduction
  • The Protocol
    Nominate a heritage officer
    Ensure that professional advisers and contractors have appropriate expertise
    Ensure that the significance of any heritage asset is taken into account when planning change or development
    Commission regular condition surveys
    Implement a planned programme of repairs and maintenance
    Secure heritage at risk
    Safeguard heritage assets that are unused or in course of disposal
    Comply with the statutory procedures that regulate works to heritage assets
    Ensure that the design quality of any new work enhances the historic environment
    Prepare biennial conservation reports
    Records and archives

Additional Information

  • Series: Guidance
  • Publication Status: Completed
  • Pages: 4


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