Buildings are listed for the purpose of protecting their special historic importance and architectural features. The listed status applies both internally and externally and can include objects such as chandeliers, structures and affixed buildings.

Whilst it is possible to make alterations to repurpose or modernise a listed building, the types of alterations that can be made will depend on the property and its protected features. Therefore consent is required if work is to affect features of special interest within the listed building. This includes alterations to the properties internal layout, timber, walls or brickwork, windows or fireplaces. Local authorities decided whether to grant Listed Building Consent.