News article

Government funding for technology in heritage buildings

Investments in building control technology.
29 July 2020

The UK Government has announced the 'most ambitious heritage preservation campaign for 40 years'. Priva UK, a building controls manufacturer with specialist expertise in the deployment of modern controls technologies in heritage buildings, welcomes this news.

However, Priva says it hopes that some of this investment will be spent on future-proofing these heritage sites in order to ensure these spaces can benefit from optimised internal environments, coupled with the same levels of energy efficiency and comfort as contemporary buildings.

The Government’s new heritage initiative – which is led by Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick will challenge every single local authority across England to draw up lists of buildings of significant historical and cultural value to an area, ensuring important local monuments are no longer left neglected and unloved. Local people will also be empowered to nominate heritage assets which are important to them and reflect their local area and identity, supported by a team of heritage experts, funded by £700,000 to help 10 English counties identify areas which need protecting.

Building on September’s announcement of £95 million to boost the economic potential of 69 High Street Heritage Action Zones, the government will also work with Historic England to identify important buildings in these zones to be nationally listed.

Protecting special spaces

“Our heritage buildings and assets need our attention and protection – and I am therefore absolutely delighted that there is a top-down Government commitment to do more to protect these special places,” comments Gavin Holvey, UK & Ireland Sales Manager at Priva.”

“However, we believe that there is often misunderstanding about the way in which modern building management technologies can be used to protect older buildings for future generations. We will continue to work closely with building managers and conservationists to dispel such myths.”

“Optimising the internal environments of special spaces, without impacting on the fabric of the building is key to heritage professionals. Our own latest generation of building controls offers the solution; we are able to help maintain the internal climate of heritage spaces at the right levels. Using such technologies improves building efficiency and reduces emissions, through greater control of heating, ventilating and air-conditioning service – but in a non-invasive way.”

Priva’s technology, which is in use at sites such as St Paul’s Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, Rosslyn Chapel and Norwich’s timber-framed Writers’ Centre, is already delivering significant energy savings, improved indoor climate conditions, for visitor comfort and easier monitoring of energy use. This in turn means that our listed buildings last longer, offering up beauty and public enjoyment far into the future.

“Our technology helps to keep these buildings alive,” concludes Mr Holvey. “We truly believe heritage buildings are at the heart of our built infrastructure. Collectively, we must all do more to ensure that ‘modern meets ancient’ in a sensitive way; today’s control technologies should be seen as a ‘friend’ of conversation – and not an energy. They have much to offer.”

Commenting on the Government’s funding boost for heritage sites, Culture Secretary Nicky Morgan said:

“Our built heritage is one of the things that make England one of the top tourist destinations in the world. The measures announced today to help protect local heritage through the planning system following the publication of the government’s new design guide, which will help inspire to reflect what communities already love about their areas – such as listed buildings.”

To request a copy of Priva’s guide to control strategies for heritage buildings, click here.