The concept of Conservation Areas was established over 45 years ago in the 1967 Civic Amenities Act. It was here that the notion of special protection for whole areas was realised, areas that represent "the familiar and cherished local scene" and embody a distinctive quality and character. Today there are more than 9000 in England alone, with every district in the country having at least one Conservation Area. The Town & Country Planning Act 1990 defines a Conservation Area as "an area of special architectural or historical interest, the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance." The purpose of designation is not to stop change, but to ensure it happens in a controlled and sensitive manner. Although often based on a concentration of older, historic buildings, it is principally the relationship that buildings have with each other and the open spaces between them, public and private, along with private gardens, historic street patterns, trees and field systems that should be protected and enhanced. The Cottingham Conservation Area was designated by Beverley Borough Council in 1974. It was reviewed in 1983, at which time it was extended along Hull Road. In 2005 National Government required that local authorities should have up-to-date appraisals of all their Conservation Areas, and a review of Cottingham has just been finalised with some extensions to the Conservation Area which now has more than 200 houses and 25 listed buildings. It is one of 98 Conservation Areas in the East Riding and a map of the Cottingham Conservation Area, as now designated, is shown below. A copy of the Review can be seen in the Parish Council Offices and a leaflet giving more details about Conservation Areas is available.