The following are links to useful guidance materials for anyone involved with heritage ironwork. Some are free to download, others are available to purchase.

On occasion the NHIG is able to pool together advice from industry experts to help with specific ironwork queries. The responses to these queries and the original questions can also be found here.

‘Architectural Ironwork – Coatings & Colour’ by Patrick Baty

Patrick Baty delivered this presentation at our seminar on ‘Colour and Finish’ in London on 15th November 2018

Architectural Ironwork - Coatings & Colour by Patrick Baty (.pdf)

Materials & Techniques

Materials & Techniques for Repairs to Traditionally Forged Ironwork

This brand new publication outlines the key methods used in repairing traditional ironwork, examining the properties of different materials and offering guidance on potential approaches to their repair.  Laid out in a user-friendly format with plenty of pictures and captions to illustrate processes, this guidance booklet offers a valuable reference point for owners, specifiers and practitioners.

You can download a taster here: Materials & Techniques TASTER (.pdf) and head to our online shop to buy your own copy (price: £8 + P&P)

Ruined or Restored?

A practical ‘crib-sheet’ to point you in the right direction when dealing with heritage ironwork.  Where do you start? What should you look for? What are the issues?

Download this helpful snapshot overview here: Ruined or Restored? (.pdf)

NHIG Conservation Principles

NHIG Conservation Principles for Heritage Forged and Cast Ironwork

First published in November 2017 our ‘Conservation Principles with Illustrated Guidelines’ expands on our original Conservation Principles, bringing the document to life with illustrated guidelines which will help familiarise readers with the methods and processes that turn theory into practice.  This publication will enable you to navigate the decision-making process from an informed standpoint, an invaluable resource for anyone who works on – or commissions work on – heritage ironwork.

Take a look at this preview:   Conservation Principles with Illustrated Guidelines TASTER (.pdf)

Purchase the full-colour printed booklet through our shop: Conservation Principles with Illustrated Guidelines

For full details of our Conservation Principles, please see our Conservation Principles page.

Forged vs fabricated

How can you tell if ironwork has been traditionally manufactured?  The following guidance, kindly made available by Proctor Taylor and Topp & Co., should help you distinguish forged work from fabricated, or help you show someone else the difference.  Download here:  Forged-vs-fabricated.pdf (.pdf)

Metals by English Heritage

English Heritage’s publication, Metals, part of the ten volume Practical Building Conservation series?  This volume deals with the conservation of a group of materials that have been used in buildings for everything from structural components and fixings to weatherproofing, repairs, and decoration. It covers both the iron-based and the non-ferrous metals (such as copper, bronze and lead), in each case considering technological evolution, deterioration processes, and the practical application and long-term implications of the common conservation materials and methods.

Finials and Terminals

Inform Guide – Finials and Terminals; conservation, repair and maintenance, published by Historic Scotland in 2008

Finials and Terminals (.pdf)


Inform Guide – Fireplaces; conservation, repair and maintenance, published by Historic Scotland in 2008

Fireplaces (.pdf)

Boundary Ironwork

Inform Guide – Boundary Ironwork.  Conservation,  repair and maintenance, published by Historic Scotland in November 2005

Boundary Ironwork: A guide to re-instatement (.pdf)

Cast Iron Rainwater Goods

The Maintenance of Cast Iron Rainwater Goods, published by Historic Scotland in January 2007

The Maintenance of Cast Iron Rainwater Goods (.pdf)