IHBC member offer: Save 20% on IHBC-branded ‘Conservation’ British Standard (BS 7913); collect it the 2014 School and save more!

IHBC members are being offered a unique opportunity to ‘pre-order’ the IHBC-branded new conservation British Standard (BS) 7913, ‘Guide to the conservation of Historic Buildings’, at 20% off, with dedicated IHBC foreword and logo, for £112 plus post & packing, or save more and collect it at the IHBC’s Edinburgh School! 

This British Standard publication comes from a special partnership between the British Standards Institute (BSI) and the IHBC that offers IHBC members the opportunity to purchase co-branded copies of the new British Standard in building conservation, and with a dedicated foreword by the IHBC.

IHBC Chair Mike Brown said: ‘This is a great opportunity to save money and also get direct access to this most critical and timely conservation standard for the sector, the newly updated and recently launched British Standard on historic building conservation’.

‘IHBC members and many others have had huge input to the development of this standard.  We’re especially delighted to be able to take advantage of the IHBC’s unique position across the many sectors that will rely on this standard by offering IHBC members access to a unique co-branded copy with our own foreword, all at a significant reduction from the list price as well’.

IHBC Education Secretary David McDonald said: ’Standards are a notoriously difficult area for conservation specialists because they must define practice across the huge range of disciplines that deliver effective conservation outcomes.  It’s even more difficult too, as conservation planning legislation and policy can vary across the UK’s nations.’

‘Offering an IHBC-branded copy of the British Standard in conservation marks out our determination to support the development of effective practice standards in conservation as a whole’.

‘Also, we will be able to build on this standard with more detailed research and guidance as required.  With that commitment, BS 7913 will help also to guide our forward planning and priorities in our education and training programmes’.

IHBC Committee vice Chair John Preston, who is reviewing the standard for the IHBC’s journal Context, said: ‘It’s great that this partnership is making the new BS7913 more accessible for IHBC members.  I found its predecessor very useful in dealing with challenging cases.’

‘Now, with planning guidance slashed, the new BS will provide even more valuable support for decision-making.  It will also be particularly helpful in retrofit proposals for traditional buildings, including supporting special consideration under the Building Regulations.’ 

Details: The co-branded British Standard (BS) 7913, ‘Guide to the Conservation of Historic Buildings’, comes in a handy A5 size and is laminated and wire-bound to help ensure a strong and long life.  It carries the IHBC logo on the front cover and has a dedicated foreword from the IHBC.  This branded copy is available ONLY to IHBC members and their employers at 20% off the list price of £140, or £112, plus p+p where applicable (no p+p where collected, for example at the IHBC’s Annual School in Edinburgh).

TO ORDER: Simply send invoice details to the IHBC at contact@ihbc.org.uk

Let us know if you will collect the copy at the Annual School and post and packing will not be charged in the invoice.

NB: Please allow up to 8 weeks for publication and delivery

TO COLLECT:  Simply collect your copy at our joint stand at the IHBC Annual School, 5-7 June 2014, in Edinburgh.

Offer applies to IHBC members and their employers only.

NewsBlogs on BS 7913

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Early notice: New IHBC post planned to help training, national and local

The IHBC is delighted to announce plans for investing in an entirely new training and support post, a ‘LETS’ Liaison Officer – where ‘LETS’ covers ‘Learning, Education, Training & Standards’ – whose remit will be to help IHBC volunteers deliver events, activities and partnership activities across our UK-wide operations.

IHBC Chair Mike Brown said: ‘This post represents a critical investment in the IHBC’s future.  In recent years we’ve had the most careful stewardship of our resources, notably under my immediate predecessors Jo Evans, Dave Chetwyn and John Yates.  Following that success, I’m delighted that we’re now able to plan for a new staff member to help us deliver, guide and partner in educational activities ‘on the ground’ across the UK.’

‘This post is a structural investment in our future, helping Affiliates as they progress to Full Membership under what we are calling our ‘Stepping Stones’ programme.  But it will also underpin cost-effective CPD events and partnerships so that we can continue our work in developing conservation practice, standards and recognition within and alongside the larger and more mainstream industries and sectors’.

IHBC Education Secretary David McDonald said: ‘We’re taking a long-term view on this appointment.  The new officer must be prepared to grow with our organisation, and be able to offer the best possible help and support to our volunteer networks, both as ‘guide’ and as ‘gopher’.  That way our Branches, volunteers and partners can deliver even more where it really counts: in practice, locally, and by supporting low-cost, effective and efficient learning and support for career progress and standards in conservation.’

DETAILS: The IHBC ‘Learning, Education, Training & Standards’ (LETS) Liaison Officer post will be advertised in the coming weeks, with a salary starting in the range of £18,000-£22,000, though with more for an exceptionally suitable candidate.  Please monitor IHBC information networks and pass on this early notice to prospective candidates and interests.

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IHBC 2014 School reminder: Early bird booking closes 18/04

The early bird booking rate for the IHBC annual school in Edinburgh ends 18 April, and with some 55 bookings made to date you won’t want to delay! 

Exhibitor and delegate information 

Newsblog

Annual school website 

Book direct

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Inquiry into NPPF launched

The Commons Select Committee has launched an inquiry into the operation of the NPPF and is calling for written submissions about the impact of the framework on planning for housing, town centres and energy infrastructure, with a deadline of 8 May 2014. 

The Commons Select Committee writes:
The Committee invites submissions on how the NPPF has worked in practice since it came into operation in April 2012. The Committee has three areas it wishes to examine and would welcome submissions that address one or more of the following:

  • planning for housing;
  • town centres; and
  • planning for energy infrastructure (excluding energy infrastructure covered by National Policy Statements).

The Committee also seeks views on the implications upon the NPPF of the findings of its research into the nature of planning constraints. Evidence from local government scrutiny committees is particularly welcome.

The Committee asks for written submissions in accordance with its guidelines by 5pm on Thursday 8 May. As a guideline submissions should be no longer than 3000 words. Submissions should be uploaded onto the website in Word format no later than the deadline. The Committee cannot review individual planning decisions. 

Access further information on the inquiry and guidance on written submissions HERE

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Heritage Fundraising: THA’s ‘Giving to Heritage’ starts

The Heritage Alliance (THA) is launching a new training programme for heritage fundraisers in partnership with the Institute of Fundraising under the ‘Giving to Heritage’ scheme.

THA Giving to Heritage officer Mark Webb writes:
The initial course will be Planning for Fundraising, which incorporates most of the elements of Fundraising Strategy.  The initial workshops will be followed by a series of other training activities over a two year period, including further workshops on other fundraising subjects, telephone surgeries, Action Learning Sets and webinars. There will also be mentoring opportunities and access to the Institute of Fundraising’s online Continuous Professional Development system.

The bespoke workshops are being designed by the Institute of Fundraising with our input. We are keen to make sure they are all as relevant and practical as possible, and will include heritage-related case studies demonstrating good practice.

We are in the process of gathering a series of good heritage case studies, but we can never have enough. If you have case studies that you would like to share with other members, or if you would like to act as a volunteer trainer or mentor, I would be very pleased to hear from you’

Contact Mark at mark.webb@theheritagealliance.org.uk

Previous IHBC newsblogs on Giving to Heritage 

Giving to Heritage website (launches May 2014)  www.givingtoheritage.org.uk

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Vandals target ancient monument in Northumberland

The defacing of a scheduled ancient monument of prehistoric rock art at Lordenshaws in Northumberland is being treated as heritage crime by Northumbria Police.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Northumbria Police on 101, quoting reference 487 070414, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

English Heritage Heritage Crime Twitter article on the damage

The Journal article

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Welsh Government announces new regeneration funding

Welsh Minister for Housing and Regeneration, Carl Sargeant has announced a £2 million fund for areas of socio-economic deprivation in Wales.

The Welsh Government writes:
The additional funding comes on top of the £5 million announced last September as part of the Welsh Government’s Vibrant and Viable Places Tackling Poverty scheme and means that 7 local authorities will now each receive £1 million.

The communities who will receive the funding are Tredegar, in Blaenau Gwent; Rhymney, in Caerphilly; Grangetown, in Cardiff; Llanelli, in Carmarthenshire; Rhyl, in Denbighshire; Caernarfon, in Gwynedd and Barry in the Vale of Glamorgan.

The Minister said: ‘The Welsh Government is committed to tackling poverty and making a real difference to the lives of people across Wales. Regeneration continues to play a vital role to this end and I’m delighted to be able to announce this increase in funding.  Each of the seven local authorities will receive £1 million each and I want to see this used to contribute to the regeneration efforts in these areas with the aim of creating more jobs and training opportunities.  We will now discuss with the local authorities concerned to decide the best way of meeting these objectives and ensuring that local communities get the maximum benefit from this funding.’

The funding is for communities who were unsuccessful in bidding for a share of the £100m Vibrant and Viable Places fund but who are in the top 10% of the Welsh Index for Multiple Deprivation.

Previous IHBC newsblog on Welsh regeneration funds

Welsh Government funding announcement

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LA skills shortage risk: new report

A recent report has highlighted concerns over a skills shortage in Local Authorities putting services at risk, as the report suggests that the extent of staff cuts in the public sector will cause reforms to fail, while leadership, IT and commercial management are the skills most lacking’

Mike Fetters, public sector director at totaljobs.com, said: ‘The past three years have been a tumultuous time for those in the public sector, with huge cuts and reforms by Whitehall affecting everyone in local government, central government and the NHS.

‘Whilst there have been huge achievements, those in the public sector are clearly worried about their ability to continue to deliver services given skills shortages and staffing gaps. Many of the skills needed are those most associated with the private sector.’

The survey also found 34% of employees believe their managers missed an opportunity to let go of poor performers during the cuts, with one third saying employers had failed to retain highly skilled talent. 

Read the Blog 

Local Gov article

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Saltire Society Civil Engineering Awards Open

The conservation category of the Saltire Society Civil Engineering Awards is now open with a deadline for entries of 30 May 2014.

The awards recognise excellence in civil engineering, the conservation category is open to projects involving restoration and refurbishment.  The other six categories are projects, design, construction, structural, environmentally sustainable construction and small community project.

News release

More information and award criteria

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England’s ‘Empty Homes’ at 10 year low

Government reports this week have highlighted that the number of empty dwellings in England is at a ten year low. 

The Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) writes:
The numbers of empty properties in England have fallen to a 10-year low, new figures show. Communities Secretary Eric Pickles welcomed the news as ‘a significant achievement’.

The latest data shows that as of October 2013, there were 635,127 empty homes across the country, down by around a fifth since 2009 and their lowest level since 2004.

But Mr Pickles especially welcomed the dramatic drop in the numbers of long-term vacant properties, which fell by around a third over the past 4 years, from 316,251 in 2009 to 216,050 in 2013.

Delivering more homes is a key part of the government’s long-term economic plan and with this in mind ministers have introduced a wide range of measures to bring back into use homes that have stood empty and unused for years.

This includes:

  • a £235 million empty homes funding programme, which will deliver 12,000 homes from empty properties by March 2015 – with apprenticeships on offer to make this happen
  • rewarding councils for bringing empty homes back into use through the New Homes Bonus – since April 2011, councils have been allocated over £2.2 billion for delivering new homes, including bringing over 93,000 empty homes back into use, which they can then use to benefit the wider community
  • giving councils new powers to remove Council Tax subsidies to empty homes, and use the funds to keep the overall rate of Council Tax down
  • cancelling the Pathfinder programme which sought to demolish homes, instead focusing on refurbishment and getting empty homes into use

Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said:‘Empty properties can blight entire neighbourhoods, becoming a magnet for antisocial behaviour when they should be family homes.  So I’m pleased to see that the efforts we’ve made to bring these homes back into use have helped bring the numbers down to a 10-year low, with the number of long-term empty homes down by around a third since 2009.  This is on top of the wider efforts we’re making to get the country building, with 420,000 new homes delivered since 2010 – including 170,000 affordable homes’

Communities Minister Stephen Williams said ‘I’m delighted to see the numbers of empty homes in this country at their lowest for a decade.  This is a significant achievement, which is not only delivering more homes but also creating more jobs and apprenticeships, leading to both a stronger economy and a fairer society as these properties are renovated.

I look forward to seeing how councils and communities build on this success in the coming year.’

Statistics on English housing:

UK Gov Stats

UK Gov News

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RIBA announces £10,000 fund for architecture research

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced a new opportunity for original research into architectural matters.

RIBA writes:
The RIBA Research Trust Award will make grants of up to £10,000 available to support original independent architecture research by practitioners, academics and recent graduates.  The judging committee particularly welcomes applications from practice-led researchers, an area which has historically received fewer applications.

RIBA President Stephen Hodder said ‘The RIBA Research Trust Awards provide an invaluable aid for individuals pursuing vital research into the advancement of architecture. The repository of research funded in the past is fascinatingly varied; this scheme has always supported a diverse range of subject matters, and I am sure that this will continue to be the case in 2014.’

Find out more about RIBA funding at

RIBA Education & Careers

RIBA news

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RICS launches new online Infrastructure Information Service

The RICS launched a new service this week aimed at helping those who require project management data information to assist in managing budgets.

Information which is available includes inflation information, access to civil engineering estimating data and quarterly analysis of trends.

For more information access the following RICS documents

Infrastructure Information Service

Demonstration of Infrastructure Information Service

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Colchester Castle call for judicial review fails again

A hotel is set to go ahead on land close to Colchester’s Castle Park after a councillors attempt to secure a judicial review failed for the fifth time.

Search Planning Portal

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Unauthorised works to Grade II* Listed shop in Henley

The Henley Standard has reported on unauthorised works to a listed building in the centre of Henley, where the owners claim no knowledge of the listing and are being required to submit a retrospective application for internal works to the 16th century building.

Access the Henley Standard article

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EH asks: Do you know a heritage angel?

The search is on for English Heritage (EH) 2014 heritage angels, the annual awards celebrate achievements of local people in rescuing buildings at risk with nominations closing 1 June 2014. 

The four categories of awards open for nomination are:

  • The best rescue or repair of a historic place of worship
  • The best rescue of a historic industrial building or site
  • The best craftsmanship by a trainee or apprentice employed on a heritage rescue
  • The best rescue of a listed building, scheduled monument, registered park, garden or battlefield, protected wreck site or conservation area 

The awards are sponsored by Andrew Lloyd Webber and the winners will be offered the chance to have a film showcasing their work and attendance at the celebratory awards evening to be held at the Palace Theatre in London. 

English Heritage writes:
This year, we’re particularly looking for exceptional trainees or apprentices for the Best Craftsmanship Angel. And across all the categories, we’re asking people to let us know if there was anyone, aged 15-24 involved in their project who deserves recognition. It won’t always be the case, but if there was a young person involved who showed particular passion and dedication, there’s a special section on the application form where you can tell us about him or her. 

Find out more about the awards and submit a nomination HERE

For detailed guidance on each category click HERE

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