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Conservation planning

If you are responsible for a historic building or place, you probably need some expert advice on how to look after it. You need a document that sets out the steps in logical order​—​usually called a conservation plan or conservation management plan (CMP).

In the best practice (which I try to follow) a conservation plan is based on a systematic investigation of the history and sig­nif­i­cance of the place, and all the things that affect its care and use. I do the investigations myself, or work with other specialists, and I write, compile and edit the conservation plan.

The cost depends on the complexity of the job. The scope of work can usually be agreed at an early stage, along with a fixed fee.

The conservation plans I prepare are clearly written and il­lus­trated. They vary in length according to the complexity of the issues​—​most are between 20 and 100 pages. They contain ac­counts of history, descriptions, policy, and specific rec­om­men­da­tions. They can get technical, but I go easy on the jargon, so you don't need to be a specialist to read them.

I have admired and been guided by the late Dr Jim Kerr’s book The conservation plan: a guide to the preparation of con­ser­va­tion plans for places of European cultural significance since it was first published in 1982. He refined and clarified his ideas in subsequent editions, and made the latest (7th) edition available as a free download.

Projects involving conservation planning

Old Museum Building conservation management plan
An updated conservation plan for one of Brisbane’s best-loved places

Blog posts about conservation planning

A lantern slide of the Old Museum Building
I have recently acquired five nineteenth-century lantern slides of Queensland subjects published by the Scottish firm of George Washington Wilson...

On not collecting
Museum people are acquisitive, mostly. They thrive on adding things to their collections, and so ensuring the survival and display...

Significant places and related objects
The Queensland Maritime Museum in Brisbane has a wonderful gallery of lighthouse equipment that displays the de­vel­op­ment of lighthouse technology...

James Semple Kerr 1932-2014
Dr James Semple Kerr died on Wednesday. Today I have spent a little time with the biography he wrote of...

Dent Island plan adopted
The latest Reef in Brief newsletter from the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority announces that the heritage management plan...

Draft Dent Island plan released
The draft Dent Island Lightstation heritage management plan is now available for download. The period for public comments ends on...


Archival recording
Conservation planning
Conservation works
Design input
Expert evidence
Fabric survey
Heritage approval
Heritage listing

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Revised 5 February 2022