The SAH was the brainchild of the late Dr Kathleen Major - the first Lincoln Diocesan Archivist, who later went on to teach at Oxford University, where she became Principal of St Hilda’s College.
On retiring back to Lincoln, Kathleen Major realised the historical and architectural interest of the many historic buildings in the Cathedral Close, and initiated a programme of documentary studies together with Joan Varley, another former Diocesan Archivist (and later supported by Christopher Johnson, then of the Lincolnshire Archives Office, current chair of the Survey of Lincoln). Stanley Jones of Sheffield Polytechnic (now Sheffield Hallam University) was enlisted to undertake detailed building surveys, many of them undertaken at weekends.
Four impressive volumes covering the whole of the Close were published in the period up to 1996. These have been universally acclaimed. Some went out of print but have been reprinted and are still available from the Lincoln Civic Trust, which has also reprinted David Stocker’s study of St Mary’s Guildhall (where the Civic Trust is based), first published by the City of Lincoln Archaeology Unit in 1991.
City Archaeologist and former Chair, The Survey of Lincoln
If you are particularly interested in the history of the historic uphill heart of Lincoln, the Bail and the Close, you should read the four fascicules produced by The Survey of Ancient Houses during the period 1971-1995, while it was attached to the Lincoln Civic Trust. Now available from The Survey of Lincoln!
The Survey of Ancient Houses in Lincoln I: Priorygate to Pottergate. Jones, Stanley., Major, Kathleen., and Varley, Joan., with a contribution by Johnson, Christopher. 1984. The Lincoln Civic Trust. ISBN 0-947693-00-9. £15.00
The Survey of Ancient Houses in Lincoln II: Houses to the South and West of the Minster. Jones, S., Major, K., and Varley, J. 1987. The Lincoln Civic Trust. ISBN 0-947693-01-7. £20.00
The Survey of Ancient Houses in Lincoln III: Houses in Eastgate, Priorygate, and James Street. Jones, S., Major, K., and Varley, J. 1996. The Lincoln Civic Trust. ISBN 0-947693-02-5. £23.00
The Survey of Ancient Houses in Lincoln IV: House in the Bail: Steep Hill, Castle Hill, and Bailgate. Jones, S., Major, K., Varley, J., and Johnson, C. 1996. The Lincoln Civic Trust. ISBN 0-947693-03-3. £25.00