Resource consent is required for some works to heritage items scheduled in the Christchurch District Plan, while other works are permitted subject to meeting certain standards.

The Christchurch District Plan provides for the protection of significant historic heritage while also recognising the impact of the Canterbury earthquakes and engineering and financial factors on the ability to retain, restore and continue using heritage items.

Resource consent is required from the Council for certain works to heritage items scheduled in the District Plan such as demolition, relocation, and alteration, and some works in associated heritage settings such as new buildings.

Council heritage staff and consultants provide specialist advice to owners and Council resource consents staff at pre-application and application stage. Heritage staff also work with Building Consent Officers where possible to find practical solutions where Building Act requirements have the potential to impact on heritage values. 

Schedule of heritage items

The schedule of significant historic heritage is contained in Appendix of the District Plan. Items are identified as Highly Significant (Group 1) or Significant (Group 2). The schedule includes links to the Statement of Significance and the heritage aerial map showing the extent of each protected heritage item and its associated heritage setting.

Heritage areas are listed in Appendix

The Planning Maps also linked from the schedule of significant historic heritage identify the location of heritage items, settings and areas. 

Heritage rules

The rules for heritage items and settings are contained in Chapter 9.3 of the District Plan.

'Maintenance', 'repairs', and 'heritage investigative and temporary works' are generally permitted subject to meeting standards in the District Plan. Signs are permitted on heritage items or in heritage settings where they comply with the rules for signage in the zone and meet the permitted standards in the historic heritage rules in the District Plan.  In some cases the work must be carried out under the supervision of a 'heritage professional'. 

'Heritage upgrade works', 'reconstruction' and 'restoration' can be carried out as a permitted activity if a Heritage Works Plan certificate (P-025) [PDF, 70 KB] [PDF 70KB] is obtained. This applies to Highly Significant (Group 1) items where the works are required as a result of damage, and to Significant (Group 2) items. The Heritage Works Plan must be prepared by a 'Heritage Professional' and certified by the Council.

A resource consent is required for:

  • demolition or partial demolition of a heritage item
  • alteration of a heritage item
  • new buildings in a heritage setting or in a heritage item which is an open space
  • relocation of a heritage item within or beyond its setting
  • any works that don't meet the permitted activity standards in the District Plan.

The rules vary depending on the type of work proposed, and the significance of the heritage item. For more information about the District Plan rules for your particular site please contact our Duty Planner via email to

Advice and assistance to owners of heritage items is also available from the Council's Heritage Team. 

Non-heritage fabric

The rules in the District Plan restrict what may be done with heritage fabric. A certificate can be requested from the Council to confirm that particular fabric is not heritage fabric, and is therefore not subject to the heritage rules in section 9.3. The Non-Heritage Fabric (P-026) [PDF, 69 KB] [PDF 70KB] request form must be accompanied by an assessment from a heritage professional. 

Heritage professionals

A heritage professional is a person with specific qualifications and experience in heritage conservation or management, as defined in Chapter 2 of the District Plan. Some of the heritage rules allow work to be carried out without a resource consent if a heritage professional is involved. 

The list of people below have all demonstrated the experience necessary to meet the definition of heritage professional. When contacting a heritage professional, you will need to check whether they consider the proposed works to be within their professional remit or not.

ICOMOS New Zealand Charter 2010

Applications for resource consent for scheduled heritage items should take account of the conservation principles of the ICOMOS New Zealand Charter for the Conservation of Places of Cultural Heritage Value (ICOMOS New Zealand Charter 2010(external link)).

The Christchurch City Council adopted the charter as part of its conservation policy.