Drawing for Understanding

BookDrawing for Understanding

Drawing for Understanding

Creating Interpretive Drawings of Historic Buildings

Historic England Guidance


August 3rd, 2016





This guidance describes a method of recording historic buildings for the purpose of historical understanding using analytical site drawing and measuring by hand.

The techniques described here have a long tradition of being used to aid understanding by observation and close contact with building fabric. They can be used by all involved in making records of buildings of all types and ages, but are particularly useful for vernacular buildings and architectural details which are crucial to the history of a building or site. .

Record drawings are best used alongside other recording techniques such as written reports and photography or to supplement digital survey data. They can also be used as a basis for illustrations that disseminate understanding to wider audiences.

Table of Contents

Section TitlePage
Case Study 1 - Low Park, Alston Moor, Alston, Cumbria
Fieldwork: site sketching and hand measuring
Case Study 2 - 33 High Street, Ely, Cambridgeshire
Measured drawings
Case Study 3 - Nappa Hall, Askrigg, North Yorkshire
Bird’s-eye views, 3D drawings and reconstructions
Case Study 4 - Old Manor House, Manningham, Bradford
Completing the drawing
Appendix: Drawing conventions