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Steepwood Bungalow, Adversane Lane, Billinghurst
West Sussex
United Kingdom

Building Conservation Professional Associations, Memberships and links.

Find out more about the associations and memberships we hold within the building conservation community.


The IHBC is the principal professional body for building conservation practitioners and historic environment specialists working in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, with connections to the Republic of Ireland.

We are an independent group of volunteers - founded in 1970 - engaged in the study and recording of traditional domestic architecture.

We study, by invitation, old houses,cottages and other domestic and farm buildings, mainly in Surrey, and have recorded over 4,000 buildings. Each owner receives a report consisting of scale drawings and sketches of the structural and decorative features of the building, together with a page or two of comments on its origin and developments. The report is free of charge but we are grateful for small donations to help with the costs of photocopying, stationery and our publications fund.

The Society is a charity. We have a small staff and most of our work is carried out by members voluntarily and enthusiastically. Many are experts in their field and their voice strengthens our reputation. 

Casework - We play a formal part in the planning system and, under the Town and Country Planning Act, must be notified of all applications to demolish or partly demolish listed buildings in England and Wales. In this area of our work we tend to concentrate on earlier buildings and should also be consulted on major works to cathedrals and churches. Every year we take up a number of cases and, where necessary, we fight them at public enquiry or in church courts. Where we hear of listed buildings at risk we try to secure repair.

Advice - Our technical staff answer hundreds of enquiries on every aspect of repairing old buildings. While promoting the use of traditional materials and skills we keep up with current technical issues, regulations and materials which may have both positive and negative implications when applied to old buildings.

Training - Many of the most famous buildings in Britain are cared for by some of the several thousand people who have received SPAB training. A unique annual scholarship training programme has been run since 1930 for young architects, building surveyors and structural engineers, while the William Morris Craft Fellowship provides advanced training for historic building craftsmen. Shorter courses are run for both professionals and owners.

Traditional buildings in a rural landscape that tell the story of the men, women and children who lived and worked in them over a 600 year period.

The carpenters fellowship

Woodnet connects timber growers and wood users in South East England, encouraging working practices that help growers to sell their wood profitably while caring for the environment.

They publish an online WoodLots Directory and in partnership with Plumpton College runs training courses and events at the Woodland Enterprise Centre.

English Herritage and Historic England

Cat Welfare Sussex and Southern Region is a local registered charity run by volunteers dedicated to the welfare of stray and unwated cats both domestic and feral, within the southern area.


The Lime Centre, near Winchester, provides a range of carefully chosen natural lime materials to support the use of traditional lime mortars, plaster and render in modern and historic buildings.

I make Log Building Tools, Oak Framing Tools, Bodgers Tools, Knives and Bespoke Tools including axes, drawknives, chisels, draw pins and a multitude of other tools and devices for the discerning house carpenter and logbuilder.

I provide all that I can for a wide range of craftsmen, who have been having difficulty in finding the hand tool for the job, and I am happy to research a particular tool and to produce it, using either the traditional techniques, or modern methods, saving time and effort. I have travelled extensively in Scandinavia, learning relevant skills with a wide variety of toolsmiths, with many thanks to the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust for inspiration and support

Barr has been working with tool steel since 1977 and as a professional knife maker has had the opportunity to work with some of the best bladesmiths and blacksmiths in the country.

He gained additional experience after receiving an Idaho Arts Council grant in 1985 which allowed him to apprentice with a traditional Japanese swordsmith.

Barr has taken his knowledge and skill and applied them to the making of fine woodworking hand tools.

Wealden Buildings Study Group

We are a voluntary group of about 40 members, the majority living in Sussex, Kent, Surrey and Hampshire. Members have diverse academic and practical experience of the inspection, measurement, drawing, analysis and recording of buildings and their context. Among our numbers are professional and amateur archaeologists, historians, architects, surveyors, and geographers. New learners are welcome: we actively share our expertise among ourselves and with other bodies in allied areas of work.

The Group was formed in 1964 by R.T. Mason, a pioneer in the study of vernacular architecture, and Roy Armstrong, founder of the Weald & Downland Open Air Museum, near Chichester.

We welcome all new members. Our annual subscription is very low, and we are open to those actively engaged in research into aspects of traditional buildings, from the recording of individual houses to studies of complete parishes and their related documents as part of landscape studies. Read our Join us page to find out more, and use our Contact Us form to send us an enquiry about membership.

What we do

Toad in cellar, 1 Coppards Bridge 2010

We respect the privacy of all 'residents' during our visits. Mr Toad watched us in 'his' cellar of c.1600-1650 during our survey.

Our objective is to widen the understanding of vernacular architecture and historical settlement in the Weald.

We study the lesser traditional buildings in the Weald - including many built by the lesser gentry, but not those of the nobility.

Our main activities are:

'Finding' new old houses, and sometimes re-visiting those already seen in the light of our ever-increasing experience.

Site visits each month from April to September, usually on Sundays, visiting one property in the morning and another in the afternoon.

Additional site visits that fall outside this main programme.

Compiling a record of each property. Over 600 records have been completed since we began in the 1960's.

Maintenance of an archive of reports, and controlling access to it for bona-fide researchers.

Winter monthly meetings with expert speakers, either members or guests, at a central Sussex location on Sundays from October to March.

Adding data to the Building Archaeology Research Database, which allows researchers to search by criteria such as building type, constructional feature, date and location.

We also encourage study of the extensive, ever-expanding literature covering vernacular buildings.Double click to insert body text here ...