Law and Government Buildings

Listing Selection Guide

A guide to outline the selection criteria used when listing law and government buildings.

This selection guide covers national and local civic buildings. They include central government buildings, shire and town halls, law courts, and police and fire stations, all of which were built in large numbers in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries as the role of the state expanded along with the complexity of public administration. Many are architecturally ambitious, and were designed to project pride in public service provision. Prisons are also treated here because of their obvious functional links with policing and the legal system, and so too stocks and whipping posts.

Museums and public libraries are covered separately under the Culture and Entertainment Buildings selection guide, while municipal sporting facilities are considered in the Sport and Recreation Buildings selection guide.

This is one of a series of guides which set out some of our approaches to listing buildings. Covering twenty broad categories of building types, they including historical overviews and special considerations for listing, plus select bibliographies. They are primarily intended to develop understanding of listed buildings and structures, and to offer insight into listing decision making.


  • Introduction
  • Historical summary
  • Specific considerations
  • Select bibliography

Additional Information

  • Series: Guidance
  • Publication Status: Completed
  • Pages: 28
  • Product Code: HEAG113


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