Conservation in Action: The Ethical, Legislative and Administrative Framework - ARCH8420

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2024 to 2025
Autumn Term 7 30 (15) Fiona Raley checkmark-circle


This module explores the policies and legislation that guide the preservation of historic sites, and the modern administrative framework of conservation. Focusing on the UK heritage protection and planning systems, the module's lectures and seminars will examine various kinds of statutory designation. The aim is to provide a thorough examination of the notions of the listed building, the scheduled archaeological site, the conservation area and the registered landscape. Particular emphasis will be put on the role of conservation in the National Planning Policy Framework and on the mechanisms through which the development of historic sites is authorised. This will involve an investigation of the challenges associated with planning permissions, and listed building consent. The module will offer the opportunity to explore the systems through which conservation is financed and managed. Guest speakers will introduce the students to the available grants that assist building conservation and area regeneration. The module will also familiarise the students with procurement strategies, as well as with conservation contracts, methods of valuation, and cost planning.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 30 hours
Private study hours: 270 hours
Total study hours: 300 hours

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods
Heritage Statement 5,000 words (100%)

Reassessment methods
Like for like.

Indicative reading

The University is committed to ensuring that core reading materials are in accessible electronic format in line with the Kent Inclusive Practices.
The most up to date reading list for each module can be found on the university's reading list pages:

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to demonstrate:

1 A systematic understanding of historical approaches in Europe, and especially Britain, to the significance of the conservation of buildings.
2 An understanding of the national and international statutory frameworks for enacting, funding and maintaining building conservation.
3 An understanding of the concept of historic environments.
4 Practical experience in the reading and writing of Heritage Statements.
5 An understanding of the administration and procurement strategies for conservation projects.
6 An understanding of current funding mechanisms and the generation of investment in the historic environment through private sponsorship and grant scheme administration.
7 An understanding of the socio-economic impact of historic site regeneration.

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to demonstrate:

1 An ability to critically apply theories, research and analysis to the ideas, development and quality of projects.
2 An ability to communicate effectively, using a range of communication skills.
3 An ability to comprehensively understand the nature of differing types of documentation used in planning and analysis.


  1. Credit level 7. Undergraduate or postgraduate masters level module.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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