Archaeological advice and antiquities

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) sets out the Government's planning policies on the conservation of the historic environment. The impact of a development upon Heritage Assets is a material consideration for the Local Planning Authority when making a planning decision.

The Archaeology and Historic Environment Service provides advice on archaeology through development control and strategic planning policy. It monitors the work of archaeological contractors and consultants who carry out excavation and survey work before sites are developed. Access our Advice on Commissioning Archaeological Work (PDF, 185KB, 1 page).

We offer pre-application advice and ask applicants to consider if a development site is important to the historic environment during this pre-application phase.

The service is also consulted on the archaeological implications of:

For more information, contact us direct.

The Portable Antiquities Scheme and Treasure Act

The Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS) is a nationwide, voluntary scheme. It records archaeological objects found by members of the public, often through metal detecting. The scheme was set up to promote the recording of chance finds. The aim of the scheme is to broaden public awareness of the importance of such objects for understanding our past.

More information is provided through the Portable Antiquities Scheme. The PAS employs a network of Finds Liaison Officers across the country.

Under the Treasure Act 1996, there is a legal obligation for all potential treasure finds to be reported to the local coroner within 14 days. The Finds Liaison Officer can assist with this; email