All historic statues, plaques and other monuments now require full planning permission and public consultation to remove.
The new legal safeguards introduced by Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden and Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick are the latest move by the Government to keep controversial public artworks where they are.
Arts and cultural workers have warned the Government's heavy hand puts the arms'-length principle of arts funding at risk.
The Secretary of State is now able to "call in" any application to remove an object to ensure it adheres to the "retain and explain" model promoted by Historic England.
Jenrick said statues will only be removed in "the most exceptional circumstances".
"We cannot – and should not – now try to edit or censor our past... what has stood for generations should be considered thoughtfully, not removed on a whim."