Painshill Park, Surrey

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Painshill Park, Surrey. A landscaped pleasure grounds and park laid out between 1738 and 1773 by the Hon Charles Hamilton. Registered Grade I. NHLE List Entry Number: 1000125

Registered Parks & Gardens

The Historic England 'Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest in England', established in 1983, currently identifies over 1,600 sites assessed to be of particular significance. Here you can find out how and why we protect them.

You can search for Registered Parks and Gardens on the National Heritage List for England (NHLE).

Castle Howard, North Yorkshire. The designed landscape was developed 1698-1738 by Charles Howard and Sir John Vanbrugh. The house is listed Grade I and the landscape is registered Grade I. NHLE List Entry Number: 1001059

Type of sites included

The emphasis of the Register is on gardens, grounds and other planned open spaces, such as town squares. The majority of sites registered are, or started life as, the grounds of private houses, but public parks and cemeteries form important categories too. Even hospital landscapes and two pumping stations are included, because they have skilfully-planned surroundings reflecting the landscaping fashions of their day. The emphasis of the Register is on 'designed' landscapes, rather than on planting or botanical importance.

Registered sites are not open to the public unless advertised elsewhere as being so.

Dunham Massey, Cheshire. The Hall is listed Grade I and its gardens are registered Grade II*. NHLE List Entry Number: 1000853

Why compile a Register?

Historic parks and gardens are a fragile and finite resource: they can easily be damaged beyond repair or lost forever. Whether in town or country, such places are an important, distinctive, and much cherished part of our inheritance and we have a duty to care for them.

In order to identify those sites which are of particular historic significance, Historic England is enabled by government to compile the 'Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest in England'.

Grass lawn with picnic benches in dappled shade of a large tree. London mansion blocks are visible through the gaps between tree and shrubs bordering this garden square.
Eccleston Square, City of Westminster, a garden square dating to the 1830s, an integral part of Pimlico's planned design initiative by Thomas Cubitt. Registered Grade II. NHLE List entry Number: 1000802

Purpose of the Register

The main purpose of this Register is to celebrate designed landscapes of note, and encourage appropriate protection. It is hoped that, by drawing attention to sites in this way, we will increase awareness of their value and encourage those who own them, or who otherwise have a role in their protection and their future, to treat these special places with due care.

Registration is a 'material consideration' in the planning process, meaning that planning authorities must consider the impact of any proposed development on the landscapes' special character.

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