Reminder on HE’s 50th anniversary ‘Conservation Areas Survey’ for IHBC members: Closing 4 December

StamfordTo mark the 50th Anniversary of Conservation Area legislation in England, the IHBC is working with Historic England on a survey to help the sector better manage Conservation Areas, so for those members who have not already filled out the survey please be sure to spend 15 minutes or so on completing it before the closing date of 4 December.

Picture: First designated conservation area in Stamford (Photo courtesy Civic Voice)

Complete the survey

For more background see the NewsBlogs

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Heritage thinking outside the box – applying a heritage focus to Brazilian projects

UK businesses can apply for a share of £2.4m to work with Brazilian partners on innovative urban development solutions in Brazil. Could you apply your heritage expertise on the projects? (Competition registration deadline 26 April 2017, applications by 3 May 2017)

Innovate UK is running a competition to fund collaborative technological solutions that address three different challenges:

  • Integration and governance of city systems
  • Urban infrastructure and affordable, smart mobility
  • Sustainable urban environments

While these challenges don’t expressly contain heritage angles, the ‘imaginative’ use of funds originally allocated for quite different intentions have always been an important strategy for heritage works in the hands of skilled conservation experts.

Could you apply your heritage skills on these projects in Brazil?

View a discussion on this kind of approach in a local authority

View the Innovate UK competition details

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IHBC supports members in crisis: 1 year IHBC fee-free and fuss-free, if you’ve lost your job or face serious sudden troubles!

ihbcmemb2015Lost your job and problems finding new work?  Or are you facing a crisis that seriously affects your conservation career or income?  IHBC is here to help, with our ‘fee-free year’ supporting you in your time of need. Just let us know and we’ll sort out your fee for a year, free of fuss and bother.  You can then focus on getting back on your feet, knowing that your professional body is still there for you.

James Caird, IHBC Chair, said ‘The Institute is very aware that careers in conservation are sometimes less secure than they once were. We want to offer our members as much support as we can during difficult periods as well as helping them generally with our wide range of cost-effective training, resources and support.  This support is simply another demonstration of our continuing focus on member needs and priorities.’ 

IHBC Director Seán O’Reilly said: ‘If you don’t have time or capacity to seek our usual fee-support services, we’re still here to help.  Just let us know and, with the minimum of fuss or hassle, we’ll make sure your fee is covered for the year, so our professional support can be counted on.’

‘This is just one of the many ways we at the IHBC helps our members as they face the challenge of developing and maintaining their specialist conservation skills.  The introduction of a stepped approach to IHBC conservation accreditation – Associate membership – addressed a big hurdle for early career practitioners.  Bursaries and fee support helped reduce our already low-cost fees even more.’

‘Now this new support means that if a member is suddenly hit with a crisis situation affecting their capacity to sort out our membership fee, they can simply call us and we will cover the subscription year, all with the minimum of fuss.’

‘This is simple, accessible and logical support for you from your professional body, to help you deal with the kind of crisis situations anyone can face’.

‘Simply email our Membership Services Officer and we will do the rest.’

Email our Membership Services Officer at

For more details on this and other fee support see the IHBC website

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Thoughts on the IHBC’s NewsBlog posts? We’ve opened our NewsBlogs to comments, so you can post them direct to us!

NewsBlog banner 940 198The IHBC has now opened its celebrated NewsBlog service to user comments, so members and users can open, join and extend the discussions around our news items.

IHBC Director Sean O’Reilly said: ‘In line with our wider plans to engage more directly with members and colleagues, we’re opening our NewsBlogs to comments and queries.  Hopefully you will find this a useful way to communicate across our membership.  Maybe even tis will encourage you to get more involved with our operations, as delegates as well as volunteers.’

‘Please also remember that this new service is being managed within our existing team, and is experimental, so suggestions are just as welcome as patience while we test and refine the procedures.’

‘And of course be sure to follow the same rules we have for our LinkedIn group, not least as improper use by an IHBC member, even if not published, will lay them open to disciplinary measures:

  • Comments are for the discussion of historic environment and related matters.
  • Comments are open to IHBC members and anyone else with an interest in heritage and conservation.
  • Product and commercial advertisements are not allowed. Products may be mentioned where they are relevant to the discussion taking place.
  • Job advertisements are not permitted. Your advert will be posted to IHBC Social Networks only when it has appeared on the IHBC Jobs etc website; for more details see

Now it’s over to you…

Access our NewsBlog Archive

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IHBC’s ‘Top HESPR tender pick of the week’: Fenland DC archaeology, investigation, survey and community engagement, closing 15 December, £31,000

HESPR_QAThe IHBC’s commercial conservation services listing, HESPR – the Historic Environment Service Providers Recognition scheme – offers members weekly HESPR Bulletins that bring tender opportunities together into one handy resource, and the Director’s top pick for IHBC members this week features a call from Fenland District Council (DC) for archaeology, building investigation and community engagement, valued at £31,000 and with bids closing on 15 December.

IHBC Chair James Caird said: ‘Our weekly Bulletin of current tender notifications to HESPR members is an innovative service that supports commercial conservation businesses that work to the IHBC’s standards and expectations.  These weekly selections offer the wider heritage world a regular insight into the conservation profession that we hope combine good news, sector profile and service inspiration all in one.’ 

Top tender pick of the week
The IHBC Director’s top pick from the HESPR Bulletin for this week comes from Fenland DC which is seeking bids on a £31,000 package, closing on 15 December, to undertake ‘projects set out in the Activity Statement for the Wisbech High Street Townscape Heritage project which is part funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). Wisbech Big Dig is to develop, support and deliver a number of community archaeology events in and around the High Street during the delivery phase of the project and will include a mixture of ‘in ground’ and building archaeology. Wisbech Underground is to research, map and investigate the network of cellars, underground warehouses and tunnels including community and local school engagement.’

Find out more about this opportunity

For more on HESPR and how to become a HESPR member see

HESPR flyerDownload the HESPR flyer

For a free promotion of your tendering opportunities and work needs to the IHBC’s HESPR members, please send details and links to Joanna at, as soon as possible.

Tenders can also be advertised for a fee with IHBC Jobs etc, including a targeted email to 1600+ recipients as well as full coverage on our Newsblog alerts and social platforms (membership and followers c.14,000) and websites with 250,000 visits a month. Contact Joanna at

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IHBC’s Context CPD tale of two traumas: The importance of conservation expertise

context146p36In helping people to discover, access and safeguard their heritage, the role of conservation professionals as experts is needed more than ever, but on different and non-elitist terms, says Nigel Walter.

In his Context article titled Conservation as action and reaction, Walter discusses how the story of modern conservation can be read as the response to the twin traumas of 19th century restoration and 20th century post-war reconstruction.

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IHBC consultation responses: PAS 2030 and 2031

The BSI consulted on two Publicly Available Specifications, PAS 2030 (Specification for the installation of energy efficiency measures (EEM) in existing buildings) and 2031 (Certification of energy efficiency measure (EEM) installation in existing buildings). The IHBC Consultation Panel findings include that the documents contain no reference to Part L of the Building Regulations or BS7913: 2013 and have not taken on board the IHBC concerns raised in 2011.

The British Standards Institute (BSI) writes:

The revision of PAS 2030 provides a specification for the installation of energy efficiency measures (EEM) in existing buildings but has been modified in response to legislative changes.

Although this PAS was originally developed to support the Green Deal, it is suggested as appropriate for application for any EEM installation. In this latest edition, the independence of the PAS has been further clarified with the removal of all references to specific funding schemes of any type and reliance on the generally accepted use of accredited certification bodies to provide compliance assessment where this is required.

The most significant area of change within the PAS is the inclusion of enhanced installer requirements for measure determination (see Clause 4) and it is on this and the related changes to Annex A, that the Steering Group would particularly value reviewer’s comments.

PAS 2031 is for certification bodies that are providing, or intending to provide, conformity evaluation services in respect of PAS 2030, Specification for the installation of energy efficiency measures (EEM) in existing buildings. This PAS specifies requirements, the uniform observance of which is intended to demonstrate that certification bodies operate third-party certification systems in respect of the installation of energy efficiency measures, in a consistent and reliable manner.

View the full IHBC responses

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Neighbourhood Planning Bill – Committee Stage amendments

The Neighbourhood Planning Bill 2016-17 was amended during its Committee stage in the House of Commons, and a number of Government new clauses were added in relation to local plan making.

The House of Commons Library states:

A number of Government new clauses were added at Committee Stage Continue reading

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Wentworth Woodhouse to receive £7.6m for repairs

As part of more than £10m provided to support culture and heritage projects across the UK, the Chancellor has allocated £7.6m to cover ‘urgent and essential repairs’ to the house in South Yorkshire, a longstanding focus of the energetic heritage charity, SAVE Britain’s Heritage.

The funds for the Grade I listed country house, announced in the Autumn Statement, are subject to the approval of a sustainable business case. The Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust agreed to buy the house in February 2016 and needs to raise an estimated £42m to pay for repairs over the next 12-15 years. Continue reading

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Historic Environment Scotland asks: What’s your heritage?

Historic Environment Scotland (HES) has announced a national campaign to find out what heritage means to the people of Scotland as part of the 2017 Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology.

The campaign aims to find places, buildings and monuments that Scottish people want to see recognised and celebrated – from theatres to pubs, and castles to schools. Continue reading

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HLF awards £3.45m to Chartwell Anniversary appeal

The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has donated funds towards the National Trust’s appeal to acquire many of Winston Churchill’s personal objects at his family home, Chartwell.

The Churchill’s Chartwell appeal has now reached £5.5m and the money will go towards securing personal items that belonged to Churchill, increasing access to the collections and opening family rooms that have never been seen by the public.

The National Trust aims to reach its appeal target of £7.1m by January 2017.

View more details on the Chartwell website

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Heating- and energy-related reports for retro-fit projects

The UK government has published a range of heating- and energy-related reports that may be of interest to members working on retro-fit issues for historic buildings and the problems that can exist when inappropriate methods and theologies are used on traditionally constructed buildings.

Scoping review of heating controls – summarises the findings of an evidence review of the energy savings, cost-effectiveness and usability of different types of heating controls. Continue reading

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The untimely demise of Birmingham’s iconic Central Library

Filmmaker Andy Howlett is raising funds to turn his research into a film about the library, which was demolished in early 2016.

He has collected footage, interviews with a range of ‘experts and eccentrics’, and filled several notebooks with theories, insights and revelations. He is now raising funds on the crowdsourcing website Indiegogo to turn his research into a film.

View the crowdfunding project

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London council creates regeneration company

London Borough of Barking and Dagenham Council establishes Be First to boost economic growth and meet ambitious targets for new homes, better infrastructure and jobs.

The move was recommended in the recent Borough’s Growth Commission’s report. This included 109 recommendations on areas such as housing, culture and heritage, and urban design, and included the suggestion of establishing a borough-wide regeneration company. Continue reading

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US Embassy scheme receives conditional planning permission

Qatari-backed hotel scheme for the Grade II listed building in Mayfair will include 137 bedrooms, additional restaurants, retail and events space

The project in Grosvenor Square, London received conditional planning permission that includes the removal of the security fences, security huts, gates, raised planters and bollards surrounding the site and situated within Grosvenor Square, Blackburne’s Mews and Culross Street.

View Westminster Council’s decision

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Wrexham’s Groves High School listing decision squashed

The BBC reports that a derelict former school, handed a reprieve after it was given protection to prevent it being demolished, could be under threat again.

The BBC writes:

The Welsh Government gave Wrexham’s Groves High School Grade II-listed status after an appeal by campaigners who wanted it preserved.

But Wrexham council challenged the decision in the High Court. The authority wants to clear the site to make way for a new school.
Continue reading

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Feature: The pros and cons of crowdfunding architectural projects

A CLAD magazine feature discusses how crowdfunding can help get projects started and allow architects to be proactive.

The article gives advice on choosing the right crowdsourcing platform, raising the full amount needed and reaching out to the right audience.

It includes a case study of how the South London borough of Peckham used crowdfunding to raise money to fund an elevated urban park on the site of some coal sidings and to restore the Peckham Rye Lido.

View the full feature

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Hidden paintings found at Stratford’s Guild Chapel

Previously undocumented wall paintings dating back more than 500 years have been uncovered within Stratford’s Guild Chapel – leading conservators to conclude it is one of the few places in Europe to have an almost complete medieval decorative scheme still in situ.

The Stratford-upon-Avon Town Trust writes:

The uncoverings were made this month by conservators currently working in the Chapel as part of the ongoing Death Reawakened project funded by Stratford Town Trust and the Heritage Lottery Fund. Continue reading

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Historic brick reservoir image wins award

Image of a covered reservoir has won the best architecture photograph of the year at the Arcaid Images Architectural Photography Awards 2016.

The picture by Matt Emmett of the East London Water Works Company covered reservoir in London’s Finsbury Park is the first time that an image of an historic location has won the award.

Emmett specialises in photographs of abandoned and derelict architecture, which he displays on his Forgotten Heritage Photography website.

View the full story

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Scottish Civic Trust calls for entries to My Place Awards

Community groups have been asked to nominate favourite new buildings, conservation projects and people in its annual awards (closing date 31 January 2017).

The Scottish Civic Trust is calling for nominations from local civic trusts, amenity societies, community councils and other heritage or community groups around Scotland for new buildings, restoration projects, landscape designs and other placemaking projects for the annual My Place Awards. It is also looking for nominations for a winner of the My Place Civic Champion award.

View the full story and view both past winners and entry details.

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The Design Museum – regenerating a 1960’s architectural icon

Museums + Heritage says that after almost five years of restoration and refurbishment, the Grade II* Design Museum has been transformed into a modern multi-purpose space.

Museums + Heritage writes:

The first thing to appreciate when you make your way into the new Design Museum is its impressive atrium. The wide-open space not only lends the visitor a view of the three floors and a mezzanine of exhibition and learning space surrounding them but also the restored hyperbolic paraboloid roof that soars 25m over the museum. Continue reading

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BDP wins Northern Estate programme

Firm is awarded architectural and lead design services for the creative adaptation and conservation of a number of historic buildings for the House of Commons.

The Northern Estate consists of a series of significant Grade I, II* and II listed buildings and interlinking external spaces, including the Norman Shaw buildings designed originally as the location of New Scotland Yard (the headquarters of the Metropolitan Police), together with 1 Derby Gate and 1 Parliament Street. The buildings currently accommodate office space for the House of Commons. Continue reading

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Westminster City Council’s ‘Special Policy Areas’ gain approval

The London Council’s plans are given the go-ahead to management development in five unique specialist clusters.

The five areas – Savile Row, Mayfair, Harley Street, St James’ and Portland Street – are deemed historically and culturally significant enough to received special measures to scrutinise any development. These measures aim to protect the character of the areas as this will help create and retain a successful local economy and establish the conditions for job creation and opportunities for training and education. For example, to help protect Mayfair’s art industry and the tailoring apprenticeships in Savile Row. 

View the Councils’ decision

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Churchill Barriers to be listed

Churchill Barriers

Images courtesy of Fiona Newton

Second World War structures at Scapa Flow have been recognised as being of national importance by Historic Environment Scotland.

The barriers were constructed during World War Two as a defensive measure to prevent enemy ships and submarines from entering Scapa Flow, which housed the bulk of Britain’s fleet at the time. The move was ordered by Prime Minister Winston Churchill in response to the sinking of the HMS Royal Oak in Scapa Bay in October 1939, by a German submarine, which was able to evade the ineffective submarine defences in place at the time. Continue reading

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Natural and cultural heritage sites help shape communities

Symposium on ‘Future Places: Using Heritage to Build Resilient Communities’ in County Down, Northern Ireland provided an opportunity to consider how heritage can contribute to the current Programme for Government and the Local Development Plans being drawn up by the local.

The Northern Ireland Department for Communities writes:

Communities Minister Paul Givan said: ‘Our heritage assets represent real opportunities – creating jobs, providing skills, encouraging tourism and supporting our economy. Even our derelict historic buildings should be seen as unique opportunities. Jobs are created in restoration and conservation and craftsmen take a pride in maintaining traditional skills. Continue reading

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