The National Heritage Ironwork Group (NHIG) is:
The NHIG was established in 2009 by a group of experienced professionals from a broad range of related fields. Together they recognised that due to the sheer quantity of architectural wrought ironwork within the heritage sector there was a need for:
NHIG was set up with the objective of providing these and is currently leading the way worldwide in creating a representative body for the conservation of heritage ironwork through discussion, formalisation, lobbying and distribution of information.
Heritage ironwork is currently at risk because:
This is amply demonstrated by the lack of education or training combined with an absence of standards or regulation. The result is that it is commonplace for unqualified people to undertake renovation works leading to the inevitable consequence of irrevocable damage, or in severe cases even destruction, of artefacts through ignorance.
A century ago blacksmith-made architectural wrought ironwork was a common and important part of our built environment. Used for anything from the most flamboyant displays to adorn stately homes to the commonplace simplicity of parkland railings. Altogether this has left us with a precious collection of heritage ironwork displaying a mastery of design and superb craftsmanship with many items being listed, often at the highest grades. Yet since the world wars there has been a steady decline in the size and condition of the nation’s ironwork mainly affected by:
By acting now NHIG believes the decline can be stabilised and a sustainable future created to re-address the current situation.
In achieving NHIG’s purpose of ensuring the conservation of ironwork for the benefit of the nation NHIG’s work can be categorised into the following areas of activity:
With the field of heritage ironwork being wide open, there is no shortage of work within the remit of the NHIG, resulting in many strands to our ambitions.