Skip to main content


The Association of Professional Heritage Practitioners (APHP) is an Association of affiliated professionals in the heritage sector who are committed to service delivery marked by professional expertise and ethical practice. The Association was established in 2003. The primary objective of the Association is to promote the identification, conservation and understanding of cultural property. In order to do this the Association has adopted objectives based on an ethical position, which it pursues through:

  • The implementation of a membership endorsement system for professional heritage practitioners that promotes competency and best practice standards;
  • The application of a stringent Code of Practice for professional heritage practitioners;
  • The raising of awareness amongst authorities and civil society of the necessity for professional standards in conservation and heritage resource management; and
  • The promotion of education and training in the field of conservation and heritage resource management.


Due to the multi-disciplinary nature of heritage assessments and the management of heritage resources, we encourage applicants from many academic backgrounds. Membership of the Association is open to any individual deemed by the Association to meet the minimum requirements set out in the Membership Guidelines. These members then become Professional Heritage Practitioners. Candidate membership is available to practitioners who do not satisfy the required academic qualifications and/or professional experience, but who work in the field and wish to work towards becoming professional members. Associate Membership is available for those practitioners who are involved in the heritage field but are unable to meet the necessary academic qualifications, but have obtained some skills applicable to the field and have proven experience. Any person or Institution may join the Association respectively as a Friend or Institution subject to their support for the objectives and Codes of Practice of the Association. All applications for membership are considered by a sub-committee of the Association established for that purpose. Annual subscriptions are charged for all categories of membership of the Association.

The current fees are:

  • Professional Heritage Practitioner Members: R950 p.a
  • Candidate Members: R450 p.a.
  • Associate Members:  R450 p.a.
  • Friend: R250 p.a
  • Institution: R1000 p.a


In addition to the objectives and responsibilities outlined above, APHP provides a professional support forum for practitioners to debate matters of interest; to discuss issues regarding professional practice; and to receive information of relevance to the profession, including the interpretation of legislation and matters relating to the Heritage Authorities. APHP, through its Executive Committee liaises with the Heritage Authorities and pursues links with related Organizations or Associations on matters of common interest. We are committed to keeping abreast of changes in the profession and communicating these with our members, and also to ongoing review of the professional needs of our members and creatively addressing those.


The Association of Professional Heritage Practitioners (APHP) has noted that where Heritage practitioners are part of a bidding team in tenders and quotations there is an increasingly common practice for membership of the APHP to be required to qualify the consultant to bid.

While APHP appreciates the recognition of the professional standards we are endeavouring to maintain within our membership, we need to bring to your attention that such a requirement is unnecessary as we are a voluntary organization and not a Statutory Council or licensing body.

We are in the process of pursuing recognition from the South Africa Qualifications Authority (SAQA) for heritage work and we are hopeful that this will lead to the formal establishment of APHP as a Professional Body. However, this process has not yet been completed.

We believe that while membership of APHP will provide the authorities with a good measure of assurance of heritage-related skills and experience, it should be regarded as an advantage, but not mandatory, to fulfil the requirements for tender.