Archaeological Monitoring / Archaeological watching briefs

Watching BriefsArchaeological watching briefs (often known as archaeological monitoring schemes) involve an archaeologist actively monitoring ground works or building renovations – a planning condition often imposed when a development lies within a known or suspected area of historical importance.

A watching brief is the staple condition for many planning conditions in areas deemed to potentially hold historical or archaeological remains. The condition requires an archaeologist to attend the development site during the implementation of ground works, monitoring the excavation for archaeological remains or in the case of buildings, monitoring renovation works in the expectation of historic fabric being revealed. If any remains are encountered, the relevant contact within the planning authority will be informed, and the attending archaeologist will deal with the material in an appropriate manner, under the conditions set out by the Chartered Institute of Archaeologists and any other relevant legislation.

In the case of extensive archaeological remains being uncovered, or remains deemed to be of great interest, ground works may be stopped and an excavation mitigation scheme put in place. This will be decided by the unitary body archaeologist governing the project.

Our heritage solutions - useful info


Pre-planning application (PRE-APP)

Archaeological Schemes
If you're at PRE-APP stage and have advice from your Local Authority that an archaeological project is required to inform your application, we can help.


Planning Condition

Archaeological Schemes
If you've applied for your planning application and have received archaeological conditions or pre-commencement conditions in your paperwork, please click below to see how we can help.


Scheduled Monuments
(SMC work)

Archaeological Schemes
Archaeological schemes of work are required when development takes place within the boundary of a Scheduled Ancient Monument (SAM). Please click the button below to see how we can help.


Works to Listed Buildings

Historic Building Schemes
If you're working on a Listed Building, there's a good chance you'll need an archaeologist to record and/or research the building before works commence and possible monitor your scheme while its underway. Please click here to see what we can do to help.


Non-designated Heritage Assets

Historic Building Schemes
The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) allows Local Authorities to designate buildings as non-designated heritage assets. If you're working on such a building, its likely you'll need an archaeologist to undertake a recording scheme.


Community or private works

Heritage Schemes
If you're a community group or charity looking for advice or to take part in (or set up) an archaeological project (or for any other archaeological works not planning-related), we can help.

Vindomora Solutions Ltd
Archaeological Practice

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2nd floor Prospect House
Prospect Business Park
Valley View
County Durham DH8 7PW

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