About the archive

Since its foundation in 1877 the SPAB has amassed a substantial archive of documents and images relating to the Society and its work. The majority of material in this unique collection was generated through casework and campaigning, but the archive also includes records of awards, projects, legislation, research, grants, education, committees, publications and advice. These documents illustrate the evolution of conservation policy and practice in this country from the late nineteenth century – which was strongly influenced by the SPAB – and the role of key figures such as William Morris and others closely associated with the Society. The collection is especially relevant to those with a local or professional interest in historic buildings or places and how these have changed during the Society’s lifetime.

When our offices reopen, researchers will be welcome to make an appointment to view archive material at the SPAB’s offices. Usual hours for using the archive are 10.30am to 4.30pm on Thursdays and Fridays. The SPAB has a part-time archivist, assisted by volunteers. Enquiries are dealt with as promptly as possible and in order of receipt. We can carry out basic searches, identify relevant material and provide summaries, but cannot undertake research on an enquirer’s behalf.

Download our notes for researchers here.

If you would like more information about the SPAB archive or would like to make an enquiry or an appointment, please get in touch.