No 4   JUNE  2001
Building   Services   Heritage   Group

The Heritage Group has for some time been researching into finding the earliest  examples and written
records  of   Heating and Ventilating systems  throughout  the  British  Isles.  A  pattern  has  emerged
which shows that the most likely buildings where old systems or equipment of  great age are still to be
found,  whether  in  use  or  otherwise,  are  within  ecclesiastical  buildings.  Whether it is a Cathedral,
Abbey,  Church,  Chapel,  Meeting Hall or  Synagogue  there  is  always  the possibility of discovering
something very old and very interesting.

This   fact  has  led  the  Heritage  Group to  start  a  new  project,  which is  to  create a  directory  and
database  of   Heating  and  Ventilating  systems  in  Church   Buildings   entitled   “Church  Heating”
complete with photographs / images wherever possible.

Already  examples of  Victorian and Edwardian  radiators and pipework systems have been found and
recorded.  The  earliest examples found  so  far  date back  to the 1870’s.  Some examples are  shown
below.   The  Search  is  now   to find   warm  air stoves  still  in  existence  whether  in  use  or  even
derelict and abandoned.

CIBSE  members and other Engineers are invited to contact the Heritage Group with details whenever
they come across any heating or ventilating systems and /or equipment that dates from this time period.

        Victorian Radiator in Winscombe Church               Perkins Heating Coil in East Brent Church  

CI Header box V Skinner  St Mary Redcliffe          Gurney  Stove from Salisbury Cathedral

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The Winter Meeting was held at the Saville Row London Offices of English Heritage.  After the  meeting the HG was given a guided tour of their Library. The Group had an interesting time checking through their extensive collection. One of the books on the Albert Hall was found to make a reference to Wilson Weatherley Phipson.
The  HG  has  now established an   ongoing  
contact  for   the exchange  of   information 
with the National Association of Decorative  
and   Fine   Art  Societies    ( NADFAS ).    
Their Committee of Church Recorders will 
now  provide the HG  with  information  about 
any original heating systems in the Victorian 
and Edwardian church buildings  they are
surveying and recording.


The book entitled ‘The Comfort Makers’ is complete, being  printed for the ASHRAE Summer Meeting.

The first rough draft of the book, the story about the early Heating Engineers entitled ‘The Heat Makers’ has been prepared.

Work continues on the ‘Air Conditioning of the Skyscraper’ book.

Research is still continuing for the book ‘Wilson Weatherley Phipson Victorian Engineer Extraordinary’

Information is continuing to be collected about all types of early heating and ventilating  systems in church buildings. 
The first draft of the introductory clauses and  listings has been prepared.

The book titled ‘BSI The First
Hundred Years  1901-2001’ has 
been  published and is  available 
from  the ICE  at   the price  of 

Mike Barber has given the first
presentations to CIBSE Regional
meetings about the HG discovery of
the steam engine and the plenum
ventilation system  it powers at the
Municipal  Technical  Institute in

The HG has been told about the John  Ryland’s Library  in Manchester which has a very early electric lighting installation and also has an early example of Air Conditioning.
This  is likely to become a planned future visit for the HG.

  The book  ‘ The Magic of Hot
  Water ’ has  been printed to
  celebrate the 25th anniversary
  of Andrews Water Heaters


and depicts the history of
  domestic hot water  heating

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