What is a Scheduled Ancient Monument?
Scheduling is the only legal protection specifically for archaeological remains, although not all scheduled monuments are ancient. Scheduling can be applied to monuments and archaeological remains of all dates, from prehistoric burial mounds to 20th century colliers.
A monument is defined in the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as being:
- Any building, structure or work, whether above or below the surface of the lane, and any cave or excavation;
- Any site comprising the remains of any such building, structure or work or of any cave or excavation;
- Any site comprising, or comprising of the remains of, any vehicle, vessel, aircraft or other movable structure or part thereof which neither constitutes nor forms part of a monument as defined above.
Many monuments contain remnants of buildings or structures; however some have no visible remains above ground and are sites of buried archaeology. Scheduling is reserved for carefully selected sites that are the most important examples of each type of monument.
Monuments in East Cambridgeshire
There are currently 41 Scheduled Ancient Monuments in East Cambridgeshire. The full schedule is held and maintained by Historic England and enquiries above specific sites should be made to them directly.
Works to ancient monuments
If you are intending to carry out any works that will affect a scheduled monument, either above or below ground, you must apply to the Secretary of State for Scheduled Monument Consent, prior to any works being undertaken. Works are defined in the 1979 Act as being:
- Any works resulting in the demolition or destruction of or any damage to a scheduled monument;
- Any works for the purpose of removing or repairing a scheduled monument or any part of it or of making any alterations or additions thereto; and
- Any flooding or tipping operations on land in, on or under which there is a scheduled monument.
It is advisable to contact English Heritage when considering any works that may affect a scheduled monument.