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Scheduled Monuments

Scheduling is the designation evolved specifically for sites of an archaeological character. It is our oldest form of heritage protection, dating from the 1882 Ancient Monuments Act, when a 'Schedule' of prehistoric sites deserving of state protection was first compiled. We advise the Secretary of State on which sites should be added to it. Sites from all periods are now eligible.

You can search for scheduled monuments on the National Heritage List for England (NHLE).

Aerial view of Carn Euny Ancient Village in Cornwall.
Aerial view of Carn Euny Ancient Village in Cornwall.

What is Scheduling?

Scheduling is the selection of nationally important archaeological sites, which would particularly benefit from close management. Archaeology is all around us. Scheduled sites form a carefully chosen sample of them, which receive close management involving Historic England staff. While some change may be possible, there is a presumption that they will be handed on to the future in much the same state that we have found them. Scheduling derives its authority from the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act of 1979.

Offa's Dyke scheduled monument
Offa's Dyke scheduled monument, Shropshire

Scheduling Selection Guides

Our approach to designation is explained in our Selection Criteria pages and associated Selection Guides.

Our scheduling selection guides explain our approach to scheduling. For archaeological sites and monuments they are divided into categories ranging from Agriculture to Utilities and complement the listing selection guides for buildings. In each guide, a historical introduction is followed by a consideration of designation issues, together with sources of further information.

Further information

You can download our 'Scheduled Monuments: A Guide for Owners and Occupiers' 2013 guide for further information on scheduled monuments.

Scheduled Monuments - A Guide for Owners and Occupiers

Scheduled Monuments - A Guide for Owners and Occupiers

Published 30 July 2013

This guide explains the implications of scheduling.

Learn more

The Scheduling Records Review OCN Project

On the National Heritage List for England (NHLE) there are 5,627 Old County Number (OCN) scheduled monuments.

These decisions were taken by the Secretary of State a considerable number of years ago. Their documentation is variable and many do not have a full description. At present these appear on the NHLE only in cursory form.

The Scheduling Records Review OCN Project is an ongoing review by Historic England of OCN records by desk-top analysis, with the aim of enhancing descriptions and adding a summary of importance. The project is not a comprehensive designation re-survey of these monuments from scratch and so we will not be carrying out consultation, but we will notify the relevant Historic Environment Records, in batches.

If you do have any queries then please contact designation@HistoricEngland.org.uk

On 1 April 2015 the part of English Heritage represented on this website changed its name to Historic England. You may notice that some of our content still refers to English Heritage. We are in the process of rebranding, but in the meantime please be assured that all our content and guidance is still current.

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