Old School courses teach homeowners, building owners and professionals skills and knowledge for the care and maintenance of older buildings. Courses can include topics such as best practices for researching the history of a building, how to manage a heritage project from start to finish, a thorough introduction to heritage conservation, and wood windows repair and maintenance.

VHF is currently offering workshops in a virtual format only. We hope to return to in-person events in the future when the public health situation allows.

Thank You to Our Project Partners

Lohn Foundation

Heritage 101 Online: An Introduction to Heritage Conservation

Saturday, October 16th, 9am-12:30pm & Tuesday, October 19th, 6pm-9:30pm
Online
$95

The core course of the Old School program and Heritage Conservation Certificate, Heritage 101 is a comprehensive workshop that provides an introduction to heritage conservation with broad relevance for owners, design and construction professionals, municipal staff and the interested public. Heritage Consultants Donald Luxton and Judy Oberlander will explore the history of heritage conservation, the guiding charters and conventions, and the regulatory environment at City Hall. Important topics will be covered including why heritage conservation is significant economically, culturally and environmentally and its impact on communities. Presentations on key topics, a site observation exercise and group work will all be part of this collaborative experience with lots of discussion.

This workshop earns 3 credits towards VHF’s Heritage Conservation Certificate. 

This course will be presented in a meeting format. The course will be split into 2 sessions. When you register you are signing up for both sessions. Each session will be 3.5 hours with 2 five minute breaks in the middle. Between sessions 1 and 2 you will need to plan for a 1-2 hour site visit at a location of your choosing. A unique feature of the course, this enables everyone to make their own selection from their own community, work project, etc. and experience a site in situ. More details will be shared during the course.

This event is sponsored by the Lohn Foundation

About the Instructors

Donald Luxton is founder and principal at Donald Luxton & Associates and has worked as heritage consultant on numerous projects over more than three decades. He is also an author and educator with several prestigious literary and heritage awards to his name.

Judy Oberlander is a consultant who specializes in heritage conservation and cultural planning work. She has created community engagement & education programs across Canada in the public, private and non-profit sectors over the past 30 years.

Creating a Heritage Conservation Plan

Saturday, November 6th, 10am-1pm
Online
$45

In many municipalities in BC, a Heritage Conservation Plan is a mandatory document for development permits involving a listed heritage property or for the purposes of a Heritage Revitalization Agreement, but it also represents a really helpful and thorough decision making process for owners of old buildings. In this informative Old School workshop, heritage professional Elana Zysblat will illustrate how to create a Heritage Conservation Plan using three real case studies. Each project will be illustrated and analyzed from the research stage, through the owner’s plans and needs, the construction phase and the crucial role of the Heritage Conservation Plan in guiding and solving the complexity of a heritage project.

This workshop earns 2 credits towards VHF’s Heritage Conservation Certificate.

About the Instructor

A professional member of the Canadian Association of Heritage Professionals, Elana Zysblat is an accomplished, award-winning heritage consultant and educational program developer with expertise in heritage conservation, cultural tourism and community engagement (formerly the Programming Director with the Vancouver Heritage Foundation (2008 to 2011)), Elana is an independent heritage consultant with Ance Building Services, a Vancouver-based firm which practices across BC. Amongst her diverse activities, Elana teaches workshops for Heritage BC, supports municipalities without heritage planners, and evaluates and guides the conservation of historic sites around the province. She is currently President of the BC Association of Heritage Professionals, a director with the Friends of the Vancouver Archives and a member of Heritage BC’s program and conference committees.

Steps for Sustainability: Heat Pumps

Thursday, November 25th, 7pm - 8:30pm
Online
$15

As homeowners take steps to make their existing home more comfortable and reduce their carbon footprint, heat pumps can be an excellent option for character and heritage homes. Incentives and grants, including the Heritage Energy Retrofit Grant and the Canada Greener Homes Grant, can make the switch to heat pumps that much easier. Drawing on his experience retrofitting homes, Scott Miller from Energy 1 Design will explore the options for heat pumps in older homes and discuss the potential benefits and challenges. This informative talk will be relevant to homeowners looking to improve the energy performance of character and heritage homes so bring your questions!

This session earns 1 credit towards VHF’s Heritage Conservation Certificate.

Old School Program Opportunities

For students: Are you currently enrolled in an educational program and 16-30 years of age? Sponsored seats for students are now available for the spring Old School sessions. Learn more about the program here or email us if you are interested in attending.

Professional Development Credits: Most workshops can qualify for Professional Development Credits: Our courses are recognized by AIBC, PIBC, BCAAIC, BCSLA, IDIBC and BOABC. All Professional Development Credits are self-reporting – talk to your professional body to inquire how to register your attendance.

Old School Courses and Workshops won a 2009 City of Vancouver Heritage Award of Merit. Sign up for one and see why!

Heritage Conservation Certificate

Requirements to receive this certificate include:

  • Heritage 101: Introduction to Heritage Conservation
  • 15 additional elective credits
  • A house tour or 3 walking tours

Evening Lectures and Heritage Lunch and Learns qualify for 1 credit each, to a maximum of 3 credits. Virtual strolls do not qualify for the walking tour requirement.

Completion of the certificate can take several years depending on courses schedules. Courses vary each year and some courses and tours are no longer offered. All courses are offered by heritage professionals working in the fields of architecture, trades & construction, heritage conservation, planning, landscaping and related professions.

For more information, please email VHF Program Manager at sarah@vancouverheritagefoundation.org.

Past Workshops and Courses

  • March 30 – Drafting a Statement of Significance
  • February 21 – Mid-Project Tour: St. Andrew’s-Wesley United Church Seismic Upgrade and Heritage Restoration
  • February 29 – Professional Historical Colours Analysis Workshop
  • May 21 – Planning a Heritage Garden Webinar
  • June 10 – Researching the History of a Building Online
  • November 21 & 26 – Heritage 101: An Introduction to Heritage Conservation
  • March 2 – Heritage 101: An Introduction to Heritage Conservation
  • March 16 – Maintenance and Repair of Wood Windows
  • May 2 – Planning a Heritage Garden
  • November 6 – Creating a Heritage Conservation Plan
  • November 21 – Researching the History of a Building at Aberthau Mansion
  • March 13 – Researching the History of a Building: Vancouver Archives
  • April 14 – Heritage 101: An Introduction to Heritage Conservation
  • April 28 – Exterior Painting and Historic Colours Workshop
  • May 1 – Electrical Safety in Older Buildings
  • November 13 – Researching the History of a Building: Vancouver Public Library
  • November 20 – The Vancouver Heritage Register and Heritage Designation – and What It Means for You
  • March 4 – Heritage 101: Understanding Heritage Conservation
  • April 2 – Neighbourhood Zoning Walk: How We Got to Today’s Chinatown
  • April 5 – Researching the History of a Building: Vancouver Archives
  • April 8 – Maintenance and Repair of Double-Hung Wood Windows
  • April 11 – Researching the History of a Building: Vancouver Public Library
  • May 13 – Masonry Workshop
  • November 25 – Neighbourhood Zoning Walk: Kitsilano
  • November 28 – Paint Stripping and Prepping Interior Wood Surfaces
  • February 23 – Researching the History of a Building: Vancouver Archives
  • March 1 – Researching the History of a Building: Vancouver Public Library
  • March 5 – Heritage 101: Understanding Heritage Conservation
  • April 24 – Neighbourhood Zoning Walk: South Shaughnessy
  • October 15 – Drafting a Statement of Significance
  • October 25 – Navigating City Hall
  • October 29 – Neighbourhood Zoning Walk: Delamont Park
  • November 22 – Researching the History of a Building: Vancouver Public Library
  • March 11 – Researching the History of a Building: Vancouver Archives
  • March 18 – Researching the History of a Building: Vancouver Public Library
  • March 28 – Heritage Projects: From Idea to Completion
  • April 25 – Heritage 101: Understanding Heritage Conservation
  • May 9 – Wood Window Restoration and Repair
  • November 3 – Researching the History of a Building: Vancouver Public Library
  • November 14 – Neighbourhood Zoning Walk: Mt. Pleasant
  • November 19 – Drafting a Conservation Plan
  • November 25 – Researching the History of a Building: Vancouver Archives
  • February 26 – & March 5 – Heritage 101: Introduction to Heritage Conservation
  • February 27 – Historic Paint Schemes
  • April 1 – Researching at the Library
  • April 2 – Energy Retrofits for Older Buildings
  • April 5 – Neighbourhood Zoning & History Walk: Strathcona
  • April 8 – Researching at the Archives
  • April 9 – Interior Wood Paint Stripping
  • May 21 – Wood Windows & Storefronts Walk: Chinatown and Strathcona
  • October 1 – Researching the History of a Building: Vancouver Public Library
  • October 8 – Researching the History of a Building: City of Vancouver Archives
  • October 11- Kerrisdale Walk: How Zoning Shaped this Neighbourhood
  • November 19 – Knob & Tube Electrical