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Historic England reveals 2022 list of buildings 'at risk'

The list documents historic buildings at risk because of neglect, decay or inappropriate development. Historic England says finding new uses for old buildings could help avoid generating the carbon emissions related to demolition and new construction.

A big space with tall columns, arched windows and metal cylinders.

Papplewick Pumping Station was built in the 1880s to pump fresh water to the rapidly increasing population of Nottingham. Today it is operated by a charitable trust, and major restoration works are set to start in 2024. (Photo: Steve p2008 via Flickr CC BY 2.0)

Date published

Historic England has released its Heritage at Risk Register for 2022. The Register highlights the state of England’s most valued historic places and those most at risk of being lost as a result of neglect, decay or inappropriate development.

175 historic buildings and sites have been added to the list in 2022. During the past year, 33 sites have been saved and their futures secured. Many of these sites have been rescued thanks to the work of local communities and charities.

In London, 17 historic buildings and sites have been added to the Register because of their deteriorating condition and 19 sites have been saved and their futures secured.

Reusing old buildings avoids CO2 emissions

The Chief Executive of Historic England, Duncan Wilson, said that finding new uses for old buildings would help to avoid the carbon emissions associated with new builds. Wilson said: "As the threat of climate change grows, the reuse and sensitive upgrading of historic buildings and places becomes ever more important.

"Finding new uses for buildings and sites rescued from the Register avoids the high carbon emissions associated with demolishing structures and building new."

Many buildings are still at risk

Buildings at risk include:

  • Papplewick Pumping Station in Nottingham - England’s only pumping station to still have all its original feature
  • King Arthur’s Great Halls in Tintagel
  • experimental concrete homes in Essex, and
  • the Tank House in Merseyside - the best surviving example of a late 19th-century glass-making tank furnace.

The register lists 919 places of worship which are at risk of neglect, decay or inappropriate change. The Register includes scheduled monuments, four shipwrecks, 104 parks and gardens and 490 conservation areas.

Historic England started documenting the condition of London's built heritage in 1991. The Register was expanded to include all of England in 1998.

Funding and advice for historic buildings

Historic England awarded £8.66 million in repair grants to 185 sites on the Heritage at Risk Register in 2021/22. In addition, 15 sites have benefitted from £3.25 million in grants from the heritage at risk strand of the Culture Recovery Fund during 2021/22. These grants help with emergency repairs to historic buildings and help protect the livelihoods of the skilled craft workers who keep historic places alive.

Historic England is a government-funded service tasked with championing England's heritage and giving expert, constructive advice. It provides practical advice, guidance and resources to building owners. 

It can help and support projects to rescue buildings at risk, including: 

  • Analysing the problems facing a building, and making recommendations 
  • Helping to identify the opportunities and the feasibility of options for future use 
  • Helping to build the skills and resilience of community groups responsible for buildings 
  • Helping to broker solutions between partners 
  • Providing information on funding 

Advice on energy efficiency

Historic England also provides technical guidance on looking after historic buildings and sites, including advice on retrofitting historic buildings to improve their energy efficiency.

Find out what is at risk near you

Historic England has published a detailed interactive map which allows users to see what is at risk in their area.

To find out the full regionalised list of buildings included on the Heritage at Risk Register 2022, visit the Historic England website.