Building conservation philosophy for masonry repair: Part 2 - "principles"

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    53 Citations (Scopus)


    Purpose: The techniques available for the repair of historic masonry structures are extremely wide ranging. The advantages and disadvantages of each type of repair can be evaluated in terms of cost, time and quality as with modern projects. It is however, important to realise that when repairs to historic buildings are selected they must conform to building conservation philosophy, or an ethical and principle based evaluation. The purpose of this paper (part 2 of 2) is to establish what is meant by principles in this context and wherever possible apply practical examples to illustrate these concepts. Design/methodology/approach: Evaluative literature review of the principles encapsulated within building conservation philosophy utilising them to stimulate discussion on practical repair interventions. Findings: It has been shown that the principles of building conservation philosophy must be considered prior to making decisions relating to masonry repair. These repairs have varying degrees of defensibility, and will ultimately lead to good or bad conservation approaches. This paper briefly discusses the principles, highlighting some of the issues that may be initially confusing to the practitioner. Originality/value: The evaluation of building conservation philosophy for masonry repair, and more specifically the "principles" have been little studied. The importance of this cannot however be over stated, as far from being an esoteric concept it affects every practical repair. This work brings together the study of the philosophical and practical, enabling practitioners to better understand the ramifications of building conservation philosophy for their projects. It must however be emphasised that as with any aspect of philosophy, there is not necessarily a right or wrong answer, only higher levels of defence for the selected repairs. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)165-188
    Number of pages24
    JournalStructural Survey
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2010


    • Building conservation
    • Building specifications
    • Regulation


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