Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings
The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) was formed in 1877 by William Morris, to help ensure that the restoration of buildings was undertaken sympathetically and appropriately, in particular to discourage the destructive restoration of medieval buildings that was being carried out by Victorian architects.
Currently, it is the largest and oldest pressure group fighting to save old buildings from decay, demolition and damage. It is a charity and has a small staff, but most of its work is undertaken by volunteers. It has 9,000 members, who support its work to help conserve the historic environment.
The Society is still run according to its 1877 manifesto. Its main purpose is to protect buildings that are old and interesting, ensuring that the nature of building restoration and repair is appropriate. It also undertakes research to help improve methods for implementing this policy and it provides education and advice services.
A series of courses and lectures are run by the Society for individual homeowners and professionals, and any member of the public can call the technical advice line to discuss queries with a member of the technical staff. It also campaigns on matters related to the protection of ancient buildings and publishes books, technical pamphlets and information sheets.
The society has a statutory role as advisor to local planning authorities. If any applications is made in Wales or England to demolish any part of a listed building the society must be notified. They are also informed by religious bodies with an ecclesiastical exemption, of certain proposals for listed places of worship.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki.
- Archaeology and construction.
- Archaeological officer.
- Building Preservation Notice.
- Certificate of immunity.
- Conservation area.
- Conservation officer.
- Ecclesiastical exemption.
- Heritage partnership agreement.
- Historic England.
- Listed buildings.
- Scheduled monuments.
- Tree preservation order.
- VAT - protected buildings.
 External references
IHBC President David McDonald is encouraging members to consider nominations for the newly launched Marsh Awards.
Church slams Belfast's £400m regen scheme due to ‘lack of attention to… preserving or enhancing character’.
HE publishes database to search for appeal and call-in decisions on planning permission affecting heritage assets and listed building consent in England.
The research relates to how the Historic Environment (Wales) Act 2016 can allow Welsh Ministers make regulations to give LAs new powers to issue ‘preservation notices’.
Key findings from the Scottish House Condition Survey (SHCS) 2016, include energy efficiency ratings, carbon emissions, Scottish Housing Quality Standard and disrepair.
Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority has deferred a decision on whether to grant planning permission for five new, affordable homes in Bainbridge for local people.
Briefings offer cutting-edge information to help both owners and building professionals.
England’s Local Government Association has responded to the provisional Local Government Finance Settlement published recently.