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Launched in 2011 the Alliance to Reduce Crime against Heritage (ARCH) is a voluntary national network which takes forward initiatives to tackle heritage crime and galvanise local action as part of the Heritage Crime Programme.

The overriding objective of the group is to reduce the amount of crime that causes damage to or interferes with the enjoyment of heritage assets in England.

Members of ARCH have a shared interest in preventing and see effective enforcement of heritage crime. Through conferences and training events the group is a means of discussing priorities, sharing information about heritage crime, carrying out training, highlighting best practise and making local contacts.

Membership of the group is free and open to all organisations and groups that have an interest in preventing and enforcing heritage crime. If you are interested in finding out more about the Heritage Crime Programme, please contact Historic England’s Customer Services Team or

Our understanding of the threats posed to heritage sites, buildings and cultural property continues to improve. The following types of crime have been identified as the most prevalent:

  • Architectural theft – in particular metal and stone

  • Criminal damage – vandalism, graffiti and in particular damage caused by fire

  • Unlawful metal detecting (‘nighthawking’)

  • Unlawful disturbance and salvage of historic maritime sites

  • Anti-social behaviour – in particular fly-tipping and off-road driving/riding

  • Unauthorised works to a listed building or scheduled monument

  • Illicit trade in cultural objects

The challenge set for the authorities charged with the protection of the nation’s heritage is clear: the historic and cultural environment should be passed to the next generation in as good, if not better, condition as we find it.


That’s why AMDS is supporting Crimestoppers' rural crime campaign. Everyone should feel able to speak up to stop crime and protect our historic places. If you have information about those behind heritage crime and you want to remain anonymous, tell Crimestoppers what you know by calling 0800 555 111 or using their online form.

In an emergency, always call 999.

David Rees is the AMDS consultant that can be contacted as a member to get further help or information through this email address -  

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