About us

The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) believes old buildings have a future. From cottages to castles and from churches to cathedrals we are here to help buildings and the people who care for them. Through our unique training schemes, courses, advice and research we help people put our expertise into practice.

Founded by William Morris in 1877, the SPAB was established in response to the work of Victorian architects whose enthusiasm for harmful restoration caused irreparable damage. Today the SPAB encourages excellence in new design to enrich and complement the built historic environment. We train new generations of architectural professionals and building craftspeople to shape this landscape with sensitivity and skill, and we play a statutory role as adviser to local planning authorities. In our casework we campaign actively to protect old buildings at risk.

SPAB: hands on history. Join today to support our positive, practical approach to building conservation.


The Vision, Mission and Values of our current strategy indicate ways in which the Society should pursue its aims.

The Manifesto of the SPAB was written by William Morris and Philip Webb in 1877.

Members of the SPAB living and working in Scotland decided to form their own semi-autonomous group in 1995.

The SPAB has been active in Wales from its very early days and we are committed to raising the profile of its built heritage.

In early 2017 a group of Irish SPAB Scholars and Fellows joined together to form SPAB Ireland.

Textile designer William Morris and architect Philip Webb established the SPAB, along with others, in 1877.

The history of the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings.

We honour those who have contributed to the SPAB and its aims.

The staff and teams at the SPAB. Includes SPAB Scotland and Mills Section details.

Meet our Board of Trustees.

Find out how you can work or volunteer at the SPAB.

Our grants are given to fund vital repair work and sympathetic conservation of old buildings.

Find out about the SPAB's projects and events. Our reports are available to download as a PDF.

In addition to its Georgian HQ in London's Spitalfields, the SPAB also owns a small number of interesting, historic properties further afield which