Offley Road South West London | Heritage & Conservation Architects - London

Heritage & Conservation Architects
London and the South East

FORM Design Group are Accredited Conservation Architects based in Surrey and have undertaken work on listed buildings and buildings within Conservation Areas for many years.


Our knowledgeable and dedicated team has the expertise to support you with all your specialist requirements.

London – A City of Historical Architecture

Why choose FORM Design Group?

As conservation architects, we’re often asked for advice about listed buildings and their architectural and historic significance.


In partnership with those entrusted to care for heritage properties, we help to protect historic assets within London and the South East.  We offer advice, conduct research, liaise with the relevant authorities – both local and national, and plan restoration and development projects.


We undertake this working alongside our Planning Consultants and Structural Engineers, providing a comprehensive service.

Conservation Architects and Historic Buildings

It’s not true that because a building is listed or sits within a Conservation Area that you can’t carry out work.  However, if you carry out unauthorised work on a listed building for instance, it is a criminal offence.


So, it’s always wise to make sure you contact an experienced listed building architect before doing any work on your listed building.  Ideally, this should be an Accredited Conservation Architect, not all architects are fully qualified in conservation work.


You can view some of our conservation projects here.

Looking for specialist heritage and conservation architects? We can help!

Ask Joao

Get the answers to your FAQs by FORM’s resident Heritage and Conservation expert, Joao Lopes MArch, DiplCons(AA), RIBA, AABC, IHBC

Joao Lopes | Form Design Group's Heritage & Conservation Architect

Joao has extensive knowledge and expertise in working with listed buildings and in conservation areas from simple vernacular, to high-end period residential developments, as well as on commercial and ecclesiastical projects.


He has an in-depth understanding of the architectural, planning and technical aspects of dealing with historic buildings and heritage assets.


He believes that beauty can be found in the smallest details. “The more you get to know an old building, the more it reveals its secrets, surprising you with techniques and workmanship that are hard to match nowadays.”

What is a Listed Building?

Listed buildings are buildings and structures that are of historical, national and architectural interest. They can be residential or commercial properties, bridges, gardens, and parks. 


They are listed to legally protect them from being inappropriately modified, extended or demolished so that their special interest can be preserved.


There are three categories of listed buildings in the UK: Grade I, Grade II* and Grade II. The majority of listed buildings are Grade II, making up 91.7% of the estimated 500,000 listed buildings on the National Register for England. 


Any building older than 1700 will normally be listed, as will the majority built between 1700 to 1840.

How can I find out if my building is Listed?

You can check whether your property is listed through viewing the National Heritage List for England.


Follow the below link, and enter your postcode or road name. It will show all the listed buildings in your area and their listing grade.


Search the List – Find listed buildings, monuments, battlefields and more | Historic England

What work can I do on a Listed Building?

Just because a building is listed, or lies within a Conservation Area, does not mean that you cannot carry out work on it.  However, you do need to ensure that you follow the correct steps and bring in the right people.  It is a recognised heritage asset and listing and designation are there to ensure that the historic and architectural character is maintained.


Therefore, whilst you may have requirements, you need to demonstrate to the planning authorities that the work that you are undertaking respects the heritage and will maintain it for future generations.


Below is a link to guidance provided by Historic England which should cover most renovation works you may want to do to your home.


Advice on the Most Common Types of Work to Older Houses | Historic England

What is Listed Building Consent?

You will need to apply for listed building consent if you wish to demolish, extend or make alterations that could affect the character of the building.  Whilst you may not require planning consent, you may still require listed building consent, so it is best to take advice if you are not sure.


Gaining listed building consent is a similar process to applying for planning permission. You or your agent/architect make an application, and the local planning authority considers this application.


The planning authority may in some cases also need to seek approval from Historic England and National Amenity Societies.  They may also have their own specialist officers to deal with such applications.  Hence it’s important to provide the right information and the right level of information if you want to be successful.

Can I make my Listed Building more energy efficient?

Just because a building is listed does not mean that it cannot be made more energy-efficient – it just needs more understanding of your home and its context.  The best approach is to look at your whole home, its environment, construction, condition and historic significance, plus all the factors affecting energy use as the starting point for devising an energy efficiency strategy.  Simple and quick things to do include:


  • Stopping draughts – Timber doors and windows, as well as timber floors and chimneys, can be draught-proofed to stop heat escaping from your home.


  • Roof insulation – Insulation at a ceiling level is a cheap way to make your home energy efficient. Even if you have it, double-check that it is deep enough and there are no gaps.


  • Upgrading your heating system – Condensing boilers are regularly improving and evolving to be more energy efficient. Have a check on your system and see if it could be upgraded.

What does a conservation architect do?

A conservation architect seeks to preserve and remodel historical buildings. The end goal is to maintain or restore the building’s aesthetic so that it is true to its original form.

What is a heritage architect?

A heritage architect is also sometimes known as a conservation architect. Heritage buildings are often linked with culture and arts within a community and a heritage architect is responsible for maintaining or restoring these buildings to their original form, whilst making them useful for our modern way of life.

What Our Clients Say…

Examples of our Heritage & Conservation Projects