Houses in conservation areas sell at a premium and gain more value, according to new research.

English Heritage commissioned the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) to analyse house prices across England.

The average price in a conservation area in Braintree and Chelmsford was £228,299, compared to £218,650 for an average property not in a designated area.

In some parts of the country, such as Darlington, the price difference was more than 55 per cent.

However, the report said houses in conservation areas classed as being "at risk" did not have as high a premium.

Conservation areas in Braintree town centre and Bradford Street entered the Heritage At Risk Register, published by English Heritage, for the first time last November. Conservation areas in Silver End and Witham town centre are also on the list.