Historic Environment Record

Historic Environment Record office arrangements - March 2023 update

The Surrey Historic Environment Record (HER) continues to face challenges stemming from the relocation of its office base to Quadrant Court, Woking in early 2021, as well as HER team members working primarily from home. Enquiries requiring reference to office-based resources (grey literature, published materials and our physical archive) may take longer to fulfil and in a small minority of cases may not be possible at all. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

For the same reason, it is not always practicable to arrange visits to the office to view HER material, though customers are encouraged to make contact to discuss requirements and what may be possible. We also request that you do not send enquiries or documents to the HER by post without first discussing other possibilities with one of the HER team.

All enquiries to the HER should be submitted using our online enquiry form. Other correspondence can be sent via email: her@surreycc.gov.uk

Surrey's Historic Environment Record (HER) is maintained by the Historic Environment Planning Team (HEP) at Surrey County Council. It is the most comprehensive record of archaeological sites, finds and historic monuments within the current administrative county.

The record has expanded from its original focus on archaeological sites and monuments to include information relating to all aspects of the historic environment, notably historic buildings and landscape features such as parks and gardens. Details of excavations and archaeological surveys are also added to the record together with environmental information. The archive currently contains over 24,000 records relating to archaeological monuments and historic buildings, and another 16,000 covering pieces of archaeological work undertaken in Surrey.

Surrey County Council charges contractors and consultants for commercial HER enquiries relating to planning matters. HER enquiries from academic researchers and the general public unrelated to planning matters are not charged unless what is required is of a complex nature.

From 1 April 2023 our charges are as follows:

  • Priority Search (results within two working days) – £172 per hour plus VAT.
  • Standard Search (results within five to ten working days) – £119 per hour plus VAT.
  • Priority Planning Application Validation/Heritage Statement Search (results within two working days) – £116.50 per hour plus VAT.
  • Standard Planning Application Validation/Heritage Statement Search (results within five to ten working days) – £76 per hour plus VAT.
  • PDF Maps in place of Shapefile Data – £58.69 plus VAT.
  • Copies of Aerial Photographs in PDF or JPEG – £24.37 plus VAT.
  • Scanning of Hardcopy Reports into PDF – £29.75 per 15 minutes plus VAT (charge may be waived if the work involved contributes towards the HER's current file digitisation programme; please contact the HER to find out more).
  • Photocopying during visits to HER Office – 26p per sheet.

Since the start of 2023, the HER and HEP provides a combined search and advice package to satisfy the requirements of the Forestry Commission's England Woodland Creation Offer and for other woodland creation schemes if desired. The package consists of an HER database report and map or maps showing known historic features within the proposal area/areas; Historic Landscape Characterization map/maps for the proposal area/areas; written commentary on historic features visible on historic maps, aerial/satellite images and lidar data and copies of the relevant mapping/imagery; and written advice from an HEP Archaeological Officer on the known historic features, historic landscape character and specialist archaeological survey in connection with the proposal.

  • Woodland Creation Search and Advice Package – £238 plus VAT (no priority service available, results supplied promptly after all elements have been completed).

For Tandridge Local Validation Requirement search requests and charges, please see consulting the HER for Tandridge District planning requirements.

Confirmation of time required to compile a HER search is sent upon receipt of an enquiry. Invoices are usually sent out to the HER customer early in the month following the one in which a search request is completed.

Summary versions of the vast majority of HER database entries are available to search online through the Exploring Surrey's Past website. Please note this dataset should not be used for planning-related purposes.

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