Fireplaces in your listed building [a guide]

There’s nothing better-looking than a fireplace sitting proudly in your home. Even during the summer months, a flickering fire to take the edge off that evening chill can be all the ambience you need. But owners of a listed building may be wondering, what are the regulations when updating my home? Keep reading for a guide on what type of fire installation might be best for you!

Listed building grades

The first thing to find out is which listing grade your home is in. Listed buildings are split into two bands: Grade 1 and Grade 2. Grade 1 buildings are protected due to historical and architectural recognition, such as Buckingham Palace or the Tower of London. The restrictions on these buildings are very tight – even the paint colours you use need to be approved.

Grade 2 buildings, the more common band for homeowners, are protected because of the same reasons. The restrictions on these buildings are more lenient but any changes to the outside appearance or the structure must be agreed upon. This means that your renovation choices may have to match the style of the home’s original time-period.

An existing chimney

If your building is older and listed, the chances are you’ll have a chimney. This means if it’s a wood burner you’re looking to invest in, less preparatory work has to be done. It’s still wise to talk with an advisor about what you’re allowed to do (every decision is specific to your home!) but updating your fireplace should be within the rules.

If your home does have a chimney, the benefits of updating your fireplace aren’t just visual. Although the ambiance of an open fire can be mesmerizing, you may want to opt for a wood burner.

Wood burning fires can produce up to four times the amount of heat as an open fire, and this can radiate throughout the house as opposed to heating the singular room it is based in. It’s an added bonus that wood burners look just as impressive! It might be a good idea to choose a design that complements the style of your home. Take a look at our selection of wood burning stoves – we may have something for you!

No chimney in your home?

As historica homes are now harder to come by, original fireplaces and chimneys are rarer. Maybe you’ve just moved into a listed building, but the chimneys are blocked and unusable, or just not there at all? Whilst you can choose to fix or install the chimney, you could also opt for a different fireplace type.

Fixing your chimney and choosing a wood burner may suit your home more than a modern, electric fireplace. However, you should consider the restrictions! Construction work must be in line with Building Regulations and Listed Building Consent. As a HETAS approved team, here at Fiveways Fires and Stoves we can ensure that your installation complies with regulations.

Taking away or altering a chimneybreast may put the building’s structural integrity at risk. Adding one in would have to be approved to fit the building’s characteristics. However, if you want a wood burning stove then don’t let this put you off! Run everything by a professional planning advisor and they will work to turn your ideas into a warming reality.

Alternative fires

If chimneys seem like a lot of hassle, a gas or electric fire could be the route for you. The simple connectivity to gas or electric lines can be much less of a job than updating or installing a chimney. Although still in need of approval due to internal work, the main thing you’ll need to keep in mind is the style.

To maintain the historical feel of your home, take a look at the different styles of electric and gas fires we provide. Although these types of fires have the reputation of a more modern vibe, there are many that can blend into your home.

Here at Fiveways Fires & Stoves, we are HETAS registered meaning we can ensure the installation is in line with the required Building Regulations of your property. Get in touch today by calling 0208 127 4747 or emailing and we can chat about your listed building query!