Heritage Terminology


ADAPTATION is the modifying a place for a compatible use. ADAPTATION is appropriate where the original use cannot be maintained, and where the adaptation does not substantially detract from its cultural significance.

COMPATIBLE USE is a use other than that for which the building was designed and which requires the least intervention in the fabric.

CONJECTURAL RECONSTRUCTION is the returning a place as nearly as possible to some conjectured (and thus unproven) traditional state. CONJECTURAL RECONSTRUCTION is inappropriate.

CONSERVATION is all the processes of looking after a place so as to retain its cultural significance.

CULTURAL SIGNIFICANCE is the aesthetic, historical, scientific and social value for past, present and future generations.

FACADISM is the retention of only the facade of an historical building while the remainder is severely altered or destroyed to accommodate a new use. FACADISM is inappropriate except where the facade of the building is important as an element in an historical environment and where the remainder of the building cannot be saved.

HISTORIC is the significance in history.

HISTORICAL is belonging to the past.

MAINTENANCE is the continuous protective care of the fabric, contents and setting of a place. It does not involve physical alteration.

PLACE is a site, area, building or other work, group of buildings or other works, together with pertinent contents, surroundings and historical and archaeological deposits.

PRESERVATION is the protecting and maintaining the fabric of a place in its existing state and retarding deterioration or change, and may include stabilization where necessary. PRESERVATION is appropriate where the existing state of the fabric itself constitutes evidence of specific cultural significance, or where insufficient evidence is available to allow other conservation processes to be carried out.

RECONSTITUTION is the re-erecting a monolithic structure on its original site using original components.

is the re-erecting a structure on its original site using original components.

RECYCLING is the modifying or adapting a place to suit a use other than that for which it was designed.

REHABILITATION is the returning a place to a state of utility through repair or alteration while preserving those features of the place which are significant to its historical, architectural and cultural values.

RENOVATION is the superficial renewal of a building in such a way that its character is respected in only a general sense. RENOVATION is appropriate only when the place has limited significance.

REPAIR is the returning the fabric to sound condition and may involve the introduction of new or old material.

REPLICATION is the act of reproducing by new construction the exact form and detail of a vanished building, structure, or object, or a part thereof, as it appeared at a specific period. REPLICATION is limited to the reproduction of fabric the form of which is known from physical and/or documentary evidence. It should be identifiable on close inspection as being new work. REPLICATION is appropriate in museum application as an illustration of an historical period or event. REPLICATION is appropriate when accurately executed in a suitable environment and presented in a dignified manner as part of a restoration master plan, and when no other building or structure with the same association has survived. REPLICATION is appropriate for indigenous or other non-permanent structures which it is not possible to preserve because of the nature of the construction materials, and where traditional building techniques themselves merit conservation.

RESTORATION is the returning the existing fabric of a place to a known earlier state by removing accretions or by re-assembling existing components. It is based on respect for all the physical, documentary and other evidence and stops at the point where conjecture begins. Restoration is limited to the completion of a depleted entity and should not constitute the major part of the fabric. RESTORATION is appropriate only if there is sufficient evidence of an earlier state of the fabric and if returning the fabric to that state recovers the cultural significance of the place. RESTORATION is appropriate where a place is incomplete as a result of damage or alteration and where it is necessary for its survival, or if it recovers the cultural significance of the place.

REUSE is the using a building for a purpose other than that for which it was designed.

TRANSLOCATION is the dismantling of a structure and its re-erection on a new site, using original components. TRANSLOCATION should be considered only when all other conservation measures have failed.

Terminology extracted from the SAHRA website.