From the beginning it went well beyond the theoretical. Charles Brooking’s childhood
fascination with period detail grew. Eventually, whenever a building was demolished
or rebuilt, he was often to be found collecting the minute details, from sash pulleys
to doorknobs, that would one day give a record and a reminder.
By 1966, the Collection was becoming significant – and Charles’ parents, as well
as his school tutor, supported his ambition to create a unique museum study centre
at his home in Guildford, Surrey.
By 1985 The Brooking had grown sufficiently in size to necessitate the creation of
a Trust to preserve it for posterity. For 24 years it formed a major study centre
at the University of Greenwich, London, where dedicated courses were run for conservators,
students and designers. Nowadays it is regularly used by historians, researchers,
students and TV companies for documentaries and interest features.