2008 Yearbook

3 Foreword Now in its eighth glorious year, the IHBC Yearbook is once again the indispensable guide to the world of the historic environment. As usual you will find in it our easy-access directory of our 1700-plus members, details of the structure and staff of the IHBC itself, essential national and local addresses, fascinating events for your diary, and particulars of valuable conservation and historic environment products and services. As if this was not enough, this year’s Yearbook also carries more engaging reports and comment from the whole spectrum of our fascinating historic environment. Truly a feast of information, opportunity and enlightenment! Our grateful thanks go to our members, our staff, our director, our officers and Cathedral Communications for once again producing an essential conservation publication, invaluable for both lay and professional who cherish and conserve our wonderful historic environment. I suggest you give it its usual pride of place on your bookshelf, next to your copy of last year’s Yearbook . As all are now aware, 2007 was a landmark year for the IHBC. We reached the great age of ten years! And, of course, we took the opportunity to celebrate. Our celebrations included a gala presentation event in Edinburgh, the unveiling of our new magenta logo, the launch of a Tenth Anniversary and Gus Astley Memorial Education Award, a special anniversary annual school in Liverpool, more anniversary events in our branches, and a special anniversary – and 100th – edition of our ground-breaking Context magazine. The year also saw the first of our ‘roving’ council meetings (in Edinburgh) as we start an annual tour of UK centres to raise our national profile across the nations and regions, and a successful campaign to increase the numbers in all classes of membership. All this was not only aimed at recognising our birthday milestone, but also at celebrating the great diversity and richness of our growing membership. Our membership includes architects and archaeologists, surveyors and engineers, planners and historians, and craftsmen and consultants, bringing with them almost the entire range of skills and experience to successfully protect and conserve our great historic environment. This has made the IHBC the principal institute in the UK for conservation professionals, able to represent the widest range of specialists engaged in the conservation and preservation of the historic environment. One in every three Full Members has a professional membership exclusive to the IHBC, and the continuing growth of the Institute has served only to broaden the range of skills, experience and crafts represented within the IHBC. This promises much for the future, particularly in the improved integration of specialised professional conservation services available for the benefit of the UK public. So what else does the future hold for us? The answer is, as always, ‘more change’! Very much on the horizon is major planning and heritage protection legislation, each presenting its own special – and possibly conflicting – challenges. However, with our extended skills base and our much strengthened staffing, structure and administration, we are in much better shape than ever to take on the demands of the future. After all, we are the institute that is all about successfully managing change in the historic environment. Finally, I would like to give my heartfelt thanks to our wonderful staff, officers, members and, especially, our director, Seán O’Reilly, for enduring the pressures that seem to be so much part of the everyday life at all levels in the historic environment conservation business these days. I am grateful for all the long hours and determined efforts he has contributed. I must also thank our many friends and supporters of all kinds who continue to sustain us in our purposes. Only by working together can we make progress. Again, we have much to look forward to in 2008! David Lovie IHBC President