Last night saw the Federation welcome members to the historic Royal College of Surgeons for the launch of the new-look Stone Heritage Group.

The event was the member-exclusive launch for this exciting new initiative within the heritage sector and gave delegates a chance to hear from the Stone Heritage group Chairman, Bernard Burns of Szerelmey about some of the plans.

The remit of Stone Heritage is to highlight and champion all matters pertaining to the use, repair, restoration, conservation, cleaning and maintenance of natural stone in the heritage, historic and ecclesiastical sector.  The primary aim of the group will be to connect you with the key players and clients within the Heritage sector, whether that be small private historic homeowners or larger bodies such as major historic organisations. 


The evening also provided members with a chance to be among the first to hear about an exciting new project within the Stone Heritage group, the Stone Heritage Register.  The aim of the Register will be to provide a resource for heritage industry professionals to help them identify which member firm is best suited to their project, whatever the size or budget. 

Ian Major of StoneTrain provided delegates with an insight into the results of a questionnaire that the Federation had sent to its members, which will help form the basis of the Register.  Ian also looked at training within the heritage sector and told members what courses were available, and the grants they could to offset the costs.

Dr Tim Yates of BRE closed the presentations with a look at the relationship between the heritage sector and technical aspects of the natural stone industry, especially the importance of correct sourcing of stone on heritage projects.

The evening closed with drinks, canapes and a chance for members to network with the other delegates.  This proved to be a well-received opportunity and some fantastic connections were made.

It was incredibly encouraging to receive very positive feedback from the members who came.  The general consensus of opinion was that the Stone Heritage group and Register will place members at the forefront of the market when tendering for heritage work in the future.

“[The Stone] Heritage Register is sounding like a great proposition.  If you’re in the industry and you practice what you preach, get on it.” – Member at launch event.