Published: Thursday, 22nd October 2015
Historic England’s latest Heritage at Risk Register, just published, highlights that a Napoleonic watch tower in Essex and a lighthouse in Sunderland are among England’s heritage now at risk.
The list also includes a 20th century concrete church in Birmingham and the remains of a First World War munitions factory in Northamptonshire.
On the brighter side, this annual assessment showed that Margate’s Dreamland rollercoaster, the Post-War bear pit at Dudley Zoo and vast airship sheds in Bedfordshire have been rescued and are no longer at risk.
For the first time, Historic England (formerly known as English Heritage), has compared all types of heritage on its register to find out the types of heritage that appear the most, from domestic buildings, to protected wrecks, archaeological ruins to industrial sites and places of worship.
Barrows, the ancient burial mounds that cover the length and breadth of the country, are the most at-risk making up 15.6 per cent of the Register (853). Nationally, much is being done to improve their fate.
Since 2014, 150 barrows have been rescued and taken off the Register. Historic England has done this through working with owners, in particular Natural England, to find ways of restoring these ancient sites.
Residential buildings, anything from Roman Villas and Georgian town houses to individual prehistoric huts and roundhouses, are the second most common (6.6 per cent; 360).
Settlements, small concentrations of dwellings such as deserted medieval villages, are the third most common type on the Register (6.4 per cent; 352).
A third of all sites on the 2010 register have been rescued, which means Historic England has beaten its target of getting 25 per cent off the register over five years. Across the next three years, the agency aims to take a further 750 sites off the Register.