1973 - 2016
In 1972 the seeds of an idea were sown within the IHVE about creating a Specialist Group whose aims would be to conserve, preserve and record the history of the Building Engineering Services Industry. The decades following the War 1950's to 1980's became the engineering dark ages when it became apparent that a large number of H&V systems with their equipment from the earliest days of the industry were being removed and destroyed, without any attempt being made to either record or preserve it.
A small and dedicated group of IHVE Members formed the Archeology of Building Services Working Party, which held their inaugural meeting in the Autumn of 1973. The year 1973 was important as it celebrated the 75th anniversary of the formation of the Institution of Heating & Ventilating Engineers, later to become the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers.
The Working Party set up a Task Force of members who major aim was to create a historical record for future generations to understand and know how the industry was created, and to identify the names of the Pioneers who designed and manufactured the systems and equipment. Also to search out the Patents taken out by these Pioneers in developing and expanding this new industry.
Another aim was to collect historical items of hardware (equipment etc.) and software (books, magazines, adverts, photographs and illustrations, etc) to be deposited in museums.
In 1977 The Working Party took Item 3 of the original IHVE Terms of Reference as its main objective, "To make the building services industry aware of the need to record historically significant installlations before they become extinct"
From 1979 the Archeology of Building Services Working Party changed its name from Working Party to Working Group, and a further change in name was made in 1982 when it became the Building Services Heritage Group. As the Heritage Group it maintained a small but energetic number of engineers dedicated to keeping alive the history of the industry and willing to pass this historical information on to other engineers. With the establishment of the Internet and then the formation of the Group's own website in 2001 the transference of its knowledge and information has since become global.