Why invite us to visit?

Find out more about the history of your house

Late 18th-century (1783) School House, FelbridgeTile hanging often conceals an early timber frame - this is a former School House of 1783. (Felbridge)Drop tie roof, a surviving crosswing to an earlier building; Elizabethan chimneys. Late 16th century, East Grinstead.Drop tie roof, a surviving crosswing to an earlier building; Elizabethan chimneys; late 16th century. (East Grinstead)Half-wealden house (early 16th century, Newchapel, Surrey)Half-wealden house, early 16th century. (Newchapel, Surrey)17th-century cottage with catslide roof on the right; repeated extensions to the left in the 18th century (Felbridge).17th-century cottage with catslide roof on the right; repeated extensions to the left in the 18th century. (Felbridge)

Householders ask the Wealden Buildings Study Group to visit their property for two main reasons:

  • To help the Group in its mission to identify, understand and record old buildings in the Weald.
  • To find out more about their house.

The Group’s members are skilled in analysing the remaining physical evidence to understand the construction of the original building. Some members are historians, surveyors, architects, or archaeologists; many are amateurs. Between them, they have extensive practical and academic experience in the evaluation and recording of vernacular buildings in the Weald.

Read about What we would look for in your property.

Read More about the Group

Benefits for you, the householder 

A sample WBSG visit reportHouseholders receive a copy of the Group's visit report at no charge.

  • An old house is a pleasure and a responsibility for householders that can often be enjoyed even more when the building is more fully understood. 
  • The knowledge gained from the visit, and a copy of the report, are entirely free of charge.
  • If you know something about your house, then the visit gives the opportunity to discuss it with experts. But if you would simply like to receive the report, that’s fine.
  • Confidentiality and your privacy are paramount to us. See our Privacy policy
  • You are giving significant help to the national effort by groups like ours fully to understand how England’s heritage of vernacular buildings first developed.

We have visited and recorded over 600 buildings since we began in the 1960's but we still depend on householders for access in order to piece together a fuller picture.

For example, it is only in the last five years that two of the earliest circa 13th-century timber-framed houses have been confirmed in Sussex. Our ultimate aim is to record all existing medieval and post-medieval historic buildings in our area.

Find out about a study visit by WBSG

Use our Contact Us form to tell us a little about your house, and we’ll get back to you.

We do NOT advise on building condition - you must employ your own surveyor or builder.

More research options

During our visit, we can give guidance on other opportunities to research your property.

We can give initial advice and some of our members can provide a professional service. Ideally you should consider all these:

  • Archaeology, especially if you plan building work that involves digging drains or foundations.
  • A full above-ground building survey. For names of WBSG members who offer a commercial service, use our Contact Us form to ask our Secretary.
  • Historical research.
  • Tree-ring dating might provide a more exact date than our visit and report can give.