The browser you are using is out of date and is no longer supported. To view and use this site correctly, please update your browser to the latest version.

We're changing

We have created a new public body, Historic Environment Scotland. While we work on shaping our future we can reassure you that all services and products will continue as normal. Please follow our progress and find out more about our new organisation.

Information for owners

Front cover of Scotland's Listed Buildings

Scotland’s Listed Buildings is our booklet for owners and occupiers and it explains more about what listing means.

You can download it as a PDF or view it as a digital edition.

How will being listed affect me?

Listing will only affect you if you wish to alter or extend the listed building. Listed buildings can be altered, extended and, sometimes, even demolished.

If you are planning to make alterations which may affect the character of the building, contact your planning authority who will tell you if you need to apply to them for listed building consent.

Will I be consulted if my building is being considered for listing?

We will try to contact the owner of a building that is being considered for listing. This can be more difficult for an uninhabited structure such as a bridge. We will, where possible, write to tell you if a building that you own or occupy has been added to the list, removed from the list (unless it has been demolished), has changed listing category, had the statutory address (the legal part of the listed building record) changed.  In exceptional circumstances, we may list a building without consulting with its owner.

How long will it take to assess my building?

See Propose A Building For Listing, Delisting Or Review page.  

Can I appeal a listing decision?

For existing listings you can apply for a review of a listing at any time or suggest changes to the listed building record using our proposal form.

If you are unhappy with our listing decision, owners, occupiers and tenants have a statutory right of appeal for new listings and changes to statutory addresses of existing listed buildings. See ‘Appeal a Listing Decision’ page for more information.  

Can I find out who proposed my building for listing?

You can write to us if you want to know who proposed your building for listing. We consider each request individually. Data Protection legislation may mean that we can’t name the proposer.

Send your request to:

Designations Team
Historic Environment Scotland
Longmore House
Salisbury Place

Or email:

How are owners notified of listing?

If your building has been listed, there has been a change of category or statutory address or the building has been delisted we will write and tell you. See Propose A Building For Listing, Delisting Or Review page.  

Does a listing cover all of my building?

Listing covers both the exterior and the interior. Listing can cover structures not mentioned which are part of the curtilage of the building, such as boundary walls, gates, gatepiers, ancillary buildings etc. The local authority is responsible for advising on what is covered by the listing including the curtilage of a listed building.

Legislation introduced on 1 October 2015 allows us to state that: an object or structure fixed to the listed building;  any object or structure within the curtilage of the listed building; and, any part or feature of the listed building that is not of architectural or historic interest may be excluded from a listing. If part of your building is not listed under the new legislation, the part will be excluded in the statutory address and in the statement of special interest.

See ‘What do we List’ page.

What if I want to alter my building?

If you are planning to make alterations which may affect the character of the building, contact your planning authority who will tell you if you need to apply to them for listed building consent.

Listed building consent is applied for in much the same way as planning permission, with an application form and plans of the proposed work submitted to the planning authority. There is no charge for listed building consent.

In some cases a local authority will ask Historic Environment Scotland to become involved in listed building consent cases. You can find out more about our role and download guidance about alterations to listed buildings.

If you need to make repairs or do routine maintenance on your building, and you are using the same materials as already exist, you will probably not need listed building consent but we recommend you check with your local authority before you start to ensure they agree that the materials are like-for-like.

Will I have to undo things that have been done in the past?

No. A building is listed as it is on the date of listing; you will not be asked to undo any changes retrospectively.

If a listed building is moved what happens to the designation?

Occasionally listed building consent will be granted to dismantle a listed building and move it to a new location. This can be near to the original location or many miles away. Once a listed building has been moved from its statutory address (the statutory address is at the top of the listed building record and is the only legal part of the record) it ceases to be listed.

When we have been made aware that the building has been moved we will normally delist it. An external party can, however, ask us to consider the building for listing in its new location.

In the majority of cases once a building has been dismantled and re-erected it will not continue to meet the criteria for listing. This is because moving it is likely to have had a considerable impact on its significance and in many cases the structure will be considered to be a ‘new’ building and not eligible for listing for around 30 years.

Very seldom a building may be dismantled and moved to a location at the same address. In this case we would examine the case for listing as noted above.

In rare cases it may be appropriate for a moved structure to remain listed even though it has been relocated. This is most likely for structures which can be removed in one piece and with a minimum of intervention to the fabric, such as a cast iron bridge, sculpture or war memorial and where the new location is considered not to have an adverse impact on the merit of the structure. In these cases we would normally delist the structure in its original location and reassess it in its new location when asked to do so.

Will grant money be available?

See our grants pages for information about Historic Environment Scotland’s grant schemes. Private owners should be aware that as well as the architectural or historical merit of a property as reflected in its listing category, building repair grant applications are considered under extended criteria that includes enhanced community use, regeneration elements and public access and this may mean that private owners are less likely to attract grant assistance from public funds.

Your local authority may also offer grants related to historic buildings.

The Funds for Historic Buildings website at is a comprehensive guide to funding for anyone seeking to repair, restore or convert for a new use any historic building in the United Kingdom.

The Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme makes grants towards the VAT incurred in making repairs and carrying out necessary alterations to listed buildings mainly used for public worship. Find out more at

Will I need to change my insurance?

See our Insurance and Listed Buildings page for more information.

Who do I go to for specialist advice about conservation?

See our conservation group pages for advice about technical issues.

Where can I find further information?

If your question is not answered above or in our booklet Scotland’s Listed Buildings please email the team at or phone us on 0131 668 8701/8705.


View our range of publications about listed buildings.


Dictionary of Scottish Architects

William Fraser

A web resource for anyone interested in the built environment and those who created it.

Contact us

Designations Team
Historic Environment Scotland
Longmore House
Salisbury Place
Tel: +44 (0) 131 668 8716

Related Links

Related External Links