Auchenblae is now officially a conservation area, after councillors backed a report put before the Kincardine and Mearns area committee.
Members also agreed to an extension of the boundary, which was proposed by the community during a public consultation process.
The report stated: “Conservation Areas are designated in recognition of their architectural and historic importance, the special character or appearance of which the local authority seeks to preserve or enhance.
‘‘The protection of a Conservation Area does not end with its designation, but rather demonstrates the commitment to positive action for safeguarding and enhancing its character and appearance.’’
The report adds: “Conservation Area status does not mean that new development is unacceptable, but care must be taken to ensure that the new development will not damage the appearance or character of the area.”
Mearns Councillor George Carr commented: “This has been a long time coming.
‘‘There are many historical buildings in Auchenblae, as well as a rich history and industry. There is a lot of support for this locally.”
The Scottish Government and the local authority are required by Law to protect Conservation Areas from development which would be detrimental to their character.
Auchenblae has 75 listed buildings and is of important historic interest to Aberdeenshire as an early mill town of the late 18th century. Its original layout has been preserved and its unique setting amongst the hills and waterways still remains. The medieval St. Palladius Chapel is designated as a Scheduled Monument.