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Preserving and protecting McGregor’s cultural heritage and vernacular architecture 


McGregor has a long history of being recognized as one of the most important vernacular villages in South Africa, and although the village has undergone massive transformations within the last four decades, it still retains its unique architectural character and sense-of-place.

For this reason the MHS encourages the protection of the architectural heritage in such a way so that McGregor’s Cultural Landscape may be retained.


The MHS encourages property owners, tenants, architects and builders to preserve the unique character of its vernacular architectural heritage,

as it is the McGregor buildings which partly make up the Cultural Landscape of McGregor which gives it its special sense-of-place.


The MHS supports development but in so doing encourages owners and tenants to preserve the heritage character and to consider themselves custodians of their heritage.    


Statutory background 

Chapter 2 of the National Heritage Resources Act, 25 of 1999, provides for the protection and management of heritage resources.

These include national and provincial heritage sites; protected areas; heritage areas and others. 


Section 34 of the Act titled “Structures” states that   No person may alter or demolish any structure or part of a structure which is older than 60 years without a permit issued by the relevant provincial heritage resources authority. It goes on to provide for certain procedures in this regard. 

The enforcement agency is Heritage Western Cape, which manages local and provincial heritage resources.

To further assist the governance of this treasured heritage, the onus remains with the owners when building or making alterations within this existing cultural landscape so that changes are made which speak of McGregor’s existing sense-of-place.

This a sense-of-place is derived from its strong vernacular architectural heritage, as well as the buildings form and scale, and also its streetscape interfaces. If this sensitive and respectful approach is followed when new buildings are constructed or alterations made, the integrity d architectural character of McGregor’s will be maintained. These will safeguard McGregor’s  existing heritage environment which for which McGregor has become renown.


Part of the MHSs mission is to raise funds to assist in the upgrading, restoration and development of this vernacular and cultural heritage architectural heritage.   



Some Houses Are In Good Condition

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Picture1 Restored.jpg
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