Ships & Boats Selection Guide
The remains of ships and boats which meet the criteria for national protection may be designated as Protected Wreck Sites, though nationally important remains may also be scheduled.
For historic wreck sites, the protection system has been in place since 1973 and operates under The Protection of Wrecks Act.
What the guide covers
The test for designation is historical, archaeological or artistic importance, with the final decision to designate being taken by government (the Department for Culture, Media and Sport). The selection guide gives detailed guidance about what may be eligible for designation.
It gives a brief overview of the types of vessels covered in the guide, the present state of designation and addresses other forms of recognition and protection.
The second half of the document sets out specific considerations for assessing ships and boats for protection. A select bibliography gives suggestions for further reading.
On 1 April 2015 the part of English Heritage represented on this website changed its name to Historic England. You may notice that some of our content still refers to English Heritage. We are in the process of rebranding, but in the meantime please be assured that all our content and guidance is still current.
Introductions to Heritage Assets
The ships and boats selection guide is supported by two Introductions to Heritage Assets which set out our understanding of the development of ships and boats from the earliest times to 1950.
Also of interest...
Find out more about protected wreck sites, why they are protected, and how to access them.