Taking Stock survey of Quaker Meeting Houses
Quaker meeting houses are distinctive and often attractive historic buildings, as well as being an important part of Nonconformist history. AHP was commissioned to undertake a national survey of meeting houses for the Religious Society of Friends, part-funded by Historic England under the Taking Stock programme. The methodology was refined following a pilot survey in the East of England. Local Quaker volunteers recorded the current condition, use, management and vulnerability of meeting houses and attached burial grounds. AHP visited all 345 meeting houses, assessed their significance and produced individual and regional reports that will inform the Quakers' management of their buildings. The project (also known as 'the Quaker Meeting Houses Heritage Project') covered England, Wales, Scotland and the Channel Islands.
Following AHP's work, in 2019 Historic England announced that seventeen meeting houses would be listed or upgraded. Read more at https://historicengland.org.uk/whats-new/news/quaker-meeting-houses-listed/. AHP's reports can be seen online at http://heritage.quaker.org.uk/.
We thank David M. Butler for permission to reproduce his drawings from The Quaker Meeting Houses of Britain (1999); and Mark Sessions for permission to reproduce drawings and photos by his grandfather, the architect Hubert Lidbetter.
Photo: Long Sutton Friends' Meeting House, Somerset, a Grade II*-listed building of 1717