Charles Brooking Architectural Historian

Charles Brooking is an architectural historian and consultant specialising in period building details. His unique knowledge and experience have involved him in a number of projects for Historic Royal Palaces, the National Trust, government offices and private clients. These include a wide range of building types from large stately homes to modest terraced houses covering the period from c.1650–1970.



As part of his consultancy, Charles offers a written evaluation of the architectural detailing within a property, which can provide invaluable information and support to listed Building planning submissions. As the founder of the Brooking Museum of Architectural detail in 1966, he has been closely involved with historic buildings for over 50 years.

In addition to his consultancy services and architectural reports, he also offers a number of general and specialist CPD courses. These cover all aspects of architectural detail and are held at his teaching gallery in Cranleigh, surrey, surrounded by a fascinating collection of salvaged examples, on loan from the Brooking Museum.


Current Courses

  • History of the English Window


    History of the English Window

    Covers blacksmith made flat-framed windows, casement, sash, various metal types through to a 1960s uPVC prototype.

  • History of Door and Window Ironmongery


    History of Door and Window Ironmongery

    Looks at latches, locks, hinges, knockers, letterplates, door-knobs, escutcheons, fingerplates, grip-handles etc.

  • History of the Coal-burning Fire-grate


    History of the Coal-burning Fire-grate

    Highlighting methods of dating cast iron grates, many 18th century designs having been copied in later years.

  • Period Joinery Mouldings


    Period Joinery Mouldings

    Covering a wide range of architraves, skirting, dado and picture-rail profiles.

  • History of the English Door


    History of the English Door

    From 16th century ledged and boarded doors to flush doors of the 1970s. This course also embraces fanlights.

  • History of Domestic Timber Staircases


    History of Domestic Timber Staircases

    Includes hand-rail profiles and baluster designs.

  • Domestic Stained Glass


    Domestic Stained Glass

    From Regency painted glass, through Victorian, Edwardian to Art Deco and etched and moulded glass.

  • Rainwater Goods – principally Rainwater Heads


    Rainwater Goods – principally Rainwater Heads

    Looks at lead, cast iron, copper, zinc, alloy, and early uPVC types.


Booking Information

Our in-depth courses cost £85 each per person for two hours with unlimited time to make drawings, measure and photograph, etc. The shorter overview one-hour courses cost £45 per person. Concessions can be made for students and group visits.

Our hourly consultancy rate is £96 per hour (2023 rates)

Guided tours of the teaching gallery cost £25 per head. Visits with a basic overview tour cost £15 per head. group concessions are negotiable.

For further information about Consultancy services and CPD Courses please contact Charles Brooking on:

T: 01483 274 203

For information relating to The Brooking Museum of Architectural detail, please visit the charity’s website:




Charles has published a booklet concentrating on Georgian architecture.  To buy a copy please contact us at: The Charles Brooking Teaching Gallery, St Martin’s Lodge, 44 The Drive, Cranleigh, Surrey. GU6 7LZ or by phone 01483 274 203 or email