An international organisation for all those interested in lesser traditional buildings

The Vernacular Architecture Group

The Vernacular Architecture Group was formed in 1952 to further the study of traditional buildings, originally those of the British Isles. In recent years, its membership and publications have also reflected a growing interest in buildings from other parts of the world.

Members are involved in all aspects of the recording and study of vernacular buildings including:

  • Detailed local or regional surveys
  • Studies of particular types of buildings including houses, farms, industrial and urban buildings
  • Building materials
  • Techniques of building, including carpentry and masonry
  • Documentary evidence

The Group encourages communication between members in a number of ways:

  • A four day conference held each spring in a different region
  • A two-day winter conference with papers on one topic
  • An occasional joint weekend school with Oxford University's Department for Continuing Education
  • Publication of a journal
  • A twice-yearly newsletter with notices of events and new publications
  • A library of offprints for circulation to members (index available on Members' Area)

The Group produces a refereed journal of national standing - Vernacular Architecture - the authoritative voice on the subject. All members automatically receive a copy of Vernacular Architecture and are eligible for free online access to current and back issues. See the Publications page for full details.

Latest News

  • New Online Glossary. We're pleased to announce that the Vernacular Architecture Group's Building Glossary is now live! The Glossary identifies terms used for vernacular buildings, in particular the components of timber-framed structures. They can be identified by name or from the drawings. It is based on the Practical Handbook Recording Timber-Framed Buildings: an Illustrated Glossary by Nat Alcock, Maurice Barley, Philip Dixon and Bob Meeson, published by the Council for British Archaeology. Do give it a try!


  • Spring Conference 2022. This year's spring conference was a hybrid conference comprising an online day of talks on Saturday 23 April 2022 followed by a day visit to King's Lynn on Saturday 30 April 2022. The recorded talks given at the online day, Aspects of Norfolk's Vernacular Buildings, are now available for watching on the VAG YouTube channel.

  • Winter Conference 2022. This year's winter conference was held by Zoom on Saturday 19 February 2022, on the topic Upstairs/Downstairs - Room Use in Buildings in Britain. The recorded talks are now available for watching on the VAG YouTube channel.

Updated 3 May 2022

For videos, see our YouTube channel:


The Vernacular Architecture Group is a Registered Charity: No 279839