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Proposed conservation area status for Ovington

We want the views of residents and interested parties on the potential designation of Ovington as a conservation area.


Following long discussions and a well attended public meeting in late 2019, we have received a request from Ovington Parish Council, on behalf of local residents, to consider the designation of Ovington as a conservation area. 

We have agreed that the request should be progressed as Ovington clearly displays architectural and historic interest based on the range of buildings it contains. The buildings are from different time periods, clustered around the traditional village green with maypole, and set in a traditional and mainly intact agricultural landscape.

Before we can agree the designation, we must conduct a public consultation to see if there is support for the proposal. We have written to every residential property in Ovington and interested parties explaining how the designation could help to enhance to local environment and the impacts it may have on their homes, as additional planning controls would be in place to protect the historic and architectural elements which make the place special.

About conservation area status

There are currently 93 Conservation areas in County Durham that are designated as being of special architectural or historic interest where the character and appearance should be preserved or enhanced. 

Designation brings positive benefits, ensuring that the heritage values of the village and its wider historic setting are formally recognised, protected and managed. This means that residents and visitors can continue to experience, understand and enjoy these qualities in the years to come. It can also bring financial benefits, as people value conservation areas for their distinctiveness, visual appeal and historic character. Research has found that this value is reflected in the price of properties in the area. Generally they cost more and go up in price, more than properties in other areas, even after adjusting for location and other factors.

Being in a conservation area might mean that houses are affected by special controls (called 'Article 4 Directions'). These sometimes restrict work that can normally be done without planning permission. See our Conservation areas for more information about types of work that need planning permission in a conservation area.

Also, any new development in conservation areas should respond to the following principles:

  • avoid standardised house designs which does not relate to the character of the area
  • respect the pattern of surrounding developments
  • respect and reflect the context and character of the conservation area
  • have a positive effect on the street and surrounding buildings
  • preserve the setting of neighbouring listed buildings
  • ensure alterations to buildings of local interest do not undermine their historic interest
  • ensure building materials are in keeping with local building traditions
  • not be static and unchanging, but allow new development that adds to the evolution of the area's character

The boundaries of the area are shown on  Ovington Conservation Area - proposed boundary map (PDF) [313KB] .

Have your say

This consultation closed at 5.00pm on Sunday 13 March 2022.

What happens next

If the proposal is supported a full conservation area character appraisal will be prepared and an adoption report will be completed by mid summer 2022.

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