Historic Preservation Commission


The Lewes Historic Preservation Commission (HPC) was established by the Mayor & City Council in 2004 with the passage of the Historic District Preservation Ordinance, City of Lewes Code Section 197, Article X- Historic Preservation Regulations. The purpose of the Ordinance is to preserve the character and ambiance of the City, which includes a blend of architectural styles that space nearly four centuries- Colonial, Federal, Victorian, Delaware Vernacular and Contemporary.

The goal of the HPC is to encourage historical preservation, without discouraging creativity or growth, in keeping with the City's Cores Values. Approval by the HPC is required for, but not limited to, any work that alters the exterior facade of a structure visible from the public right of way. The City of Lewes HPC User Guide for Home Renovation & Construction in the Historic District is available to help with this process. If you live within the Historic District of Lewes, please refer to this guide when planning any renovation or new construction.

Completing a Building Permit Application (Renovation/Addition/Demolition) triggers the review process if your property is within the Historic District. All meetings of the HPC are open to the public and decisions are based on the plans and on information presented by the applicant and/or representative, along with discussion with the Commission. Please refer to the User Guide for the criteria used by the HPC when reviewing an application. The Building Official can be contacted at the City Manager's Office, at Lewes City Hall, 114 E. Third Street, Lewes DE 19958, (302) 645-7777 x120.


  • Barbara Warnell, Chairperson
  • Philip Franz, Vice Chairperson
  • Rachel Grier-Reynolds, Secretary
  • Drew McKay
  • George Thomasson
  • Larry Adams
  • Bonnie Osler, Council Liaison (ex-officio)
  • Ann Marie Townshend, City Manager (ex-officio)
  • Robin Davis, Asst. Building Official (ex-officio)
  • Jacqueline Doherty, Recording Secretary


The Historic Preservation Commission meets the first Tuesday of each month at 7:00pm in Council Chambers at City Hall, unless otherwise noted.