From buildings and artwork to parks and gardens, Black Country residents are being invited to nominate their favourite places for inclusion on important local heritage lists.

People can put forward their well loved places and spaces for recognition on the lists after councils in Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton won £70,000 of Government funding earlier this year to improve, update and extend their records of local heritage assets. 

Local heritage lists help councils to formally identify, protect and promote those sites which play a significant role in the local character and distinctiveness of our region. 

The lists can contain historic buildings, structures, parks and gardens, archaeological and geological sites and other heritage assets. They play an important part in the planning process, ensuring the heritage value of a site is considered when making planning decisions. 

City of Wolverhampton Council is the lead authority on the project and has been working with the other Black Country councils, local societies and groups as well as specialists TDR Heritage to review the existing lists and agree selection criteria for new suggestions.

The 4 Black Country authorities already have more than 1,000 entries on their combined local lists – however there are many more buildings and heritage assets in our area that are worthy of inclusion.

Now local people, groups and societies are being invited to get involved and help identify the place and spaces they feel should be included.

Once all nominations have been made, further research will be undertaken to assess the sites against the selection criteria. Recommendations will then be made as to whether a nomination should be locally listed, may fulfil criteria for National Listing, or should be added to each councils’ Historic Environment Records. 

Following receipt of the recommendations there will be a public consultation next year on the new additions, and then adoption and publication of the updated local heritage lists for each authority. 

Councillor Stephen Simkins, City of Wolverhampton Council’s deputy leader and cabinet member for city economy, said: “We all know that the Black Country has some remarkable heritage sites that deserve to be recognised and protected.

“Our region is full of history and character and people will certainly have their favourite building or green space or piece of artwork. This is a great opportunity for residents to put forward their nominations and make sure our local heritage lists reflect the wide range of wonderful attractions we have.

“It’s really important that local people take part in this project, alongside the 4 Black County councils and groups and societies. We are surrounded by a historic environment and it is important that we do all we can to recognise it.”

Funding to create and update the lists came from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities. The Black Country was one of 22 areas in England to have made a successful bid.

To nominate your favourite place or space for the local heritage list, visit Black Country Local Heritage List. The nominations open on 15 November and run until 14 February, 2022.