Much of Bishop Burton has been designated a conservation area. The Town and Country Planning Act 1990 defines a Conservation Area as "an area of special architectural or historic interest the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance".

The East Riding County Council has undertaken an appraisal of the village's conservation requirements which is also a brief history of the village and its development. The document updated in 2008 is attached below. If you want to be sure you have the latest update check the ERYC web site at the following location:

The document defines the special interest of Bishop Burton as follows. "The special character and appearance of the Bishop Burton Conservation Area is to be found in the survival of this former estate village, whose predominantly white painted cottages are grouped around its two greens and Mere. Bisected by the busy A1079 Hull to York road, it nestles in a hollow in the terrain which, with the impressive tree cover on its edges, adds to a feeling of enclosure.

It has some strong characteristics, including the importance of its open spaces and its disciplined architecture, where features such as the use of white painted brickwork, short chimneys, rustic porches and gabled dormers all feature strongly. In the summer, the importance of the trees on its greens and the visually cooling effect of its water create a balance to which other villages can only aspire."

The County Council document is very important since it delineates the conservation area to which the conservation principles and planning legislation apply. Thanks to Gordon Stephenson for locating it on the internet.