The Johannesburg Heritage Foundation (JHF) was born out of the fight against two decades of ruthless destruction, starting in 1960, that destroyed hundreds of homes in Parktown.

The organisation was initially established as the Parktown & Westcliff Heritage Trust in 1985 to rally support for the heritage of the area (which was then under threat by developers), and to combat public indifference by making heritage houses more accessible. The Parktown & Westcliff Heritage Trust officially changed its name to the Johannesburg Heritage Foundation in 2012 to reflect the fact that its work in support of heritage extended well beyond the boundaries of Parktown and Westcliff to include the greater metropolis in all its diversity. 

The aims and objectives of the Johannesburg Heritage Foundation are to ensure that the valuable cultural heritage of Johannesburg is retained for future generations by:

  • Increasing public awareness of our heritage by creating opportunities for people to become familiar with this heritage and its special significance. This includes our Blue Plaques programme.
  • Identifying significant sites and areas and motivating the protection of such heritage through the application of the National Heritage Resources Act and measures in the town planning legislation.
  • Restoring buildings, gardens, and sites, and marking them appropriately with heritage plaques.
  • Offering tours and other activities for schools to ensure that learners get to know their city and take pride in their heritage.
  • Researching and publishing, both in print and online, information on many aspects of Johannesburg’s heritage.
  • Johannesburg Heritage Foundation is a voluntary organisation run by the members who meet annually and elect a Board of Management. The Board controls all the activities of the Foundation.

Meet the Chair

David Fleminger

Born and bred in Joburg, David is a writer, editor and director with a lifelong passion for heritage and history. His goal is to keep the city’s past alive while still looking towards the future.

Meet our Founder and Honorary Life President

Flo Bird

Flo Bird founded the organisation in 1985 and now holds the title of Honorary Life President. She has decades of experience in heritage activism and conservation, with many notable successes in Johannesburg.