Conservation of Cork’s Architectural Heritage


Cork has an outstanding built heritage that is of significance to Cork but also in a national and regional context. The conservation of these heritage assets is a vital component of ensuring that the City Council protects what is special about Cork for future generations. The maintenance, adaption and re-use of older buildings also yields aesthetic, environmental and economic benefits. 

A Guide to Protected Structures in Cork City

Cork has many building types, building features and elements of character that are unique to Cork or locally distinctive within Ireland. The attached document summarise many of these distinctive features relating to Cork’s eighteenth and nineteenth century architectural examples. 

Cork’s special buildings and features

Cork City Council is legally obliged to seek the conservation of its built heritage, or architectural heritage, by the Planning and Development Act 2000. This act provides the basis for the Record of Protected Structures, Architectural Conservation Areas, Tree Preservation Orders and other statutory designations for the protection of Cork’s built and natural heritage. The Cork City Development Plan 2009-2015 provides the policy basis for assessing development proposals affecting Cork’s architectural heritage. Cork City Council has protected buildings of significance since the Cork City Development Plan 1968 which designated many buildings for protection. 

The following sections provide guidance on:


Best practice in the conservation of buildings and features

If you require further guidance on the conservation of your building then please contact the City Council. 

If you are a conservation practitioner and would like to offer a professional or craft service to potential clients then please let us know. 

Contact us

If you have a query regarding the conservation of your building please contact the following members of staff if your query relates to: 

Conservation Grants:       

Planning Policy administrator:            021-492-4086 or 021-492-4757 

Conservation of your building:

North City Area Planner:                   021-492-4349 or

City Centre Area Planner:                  021-492-4732 or

South City Area Planner:                    021-492-4715 or 

Other Conservation Queries:     

Planning Policy administrator:            021-492-4086 or 

Your conservation query will be referred to the appropriate person when you make contact with the City Council, including the City Council’s Conservation Officer who currently works on a part-time basis.  

Making planning applications affecting buildings on the Record of Protected Structures or Architectural Conservation Areas

The following guidance is provided by the Department of Heritage, Environment and Local Government to give a general introduction to architectural heritage: 

PL 12 - A Guide to Architectural Heritage

Architectural heritage protection: Guidelines to Planning Authorities


Guidance on Making a Planning Application 

Conservation projects and publications

Cork City Council participates in a range of conservation related projects. Details of projects will be provided in this section as resources allow.