National Trust HISTORIC PROPERTIES and COLLECTIONS
Clothes moths attack Trust property
It might sound a little overdramatic, but the common Clothes Moth Tineola bisselliella is literally attacking the fabric of Killerton House near Exeter in Devon.
Lurking deep, not only in the heart of the nation’s wardrobes but also the curtains, underlay and upholstery of Killerton House, this common and fairly non-descript moth is now breeding three times a year rather than the normal once.
Clothes moths love nothing better than a bit of luxury fabric to gorge on such as fur or cashmere, because the larvae are able to digest the animal protein keratin found in hair, wool, fur and feathers, they can cause serious dame to textiles, upholstery, natural history specimens and ethnographical objects.
Infestations can start from adults flying in through open doors and windows, from birds’ nests or from infested objects being brought in. The adults shun the light, hiding in dark undisturbed areas and laying their eggs on suitable food sources such as carpets, stuffed animals, woollen costumes and soiled silk.
Warmer temperatures are thought to be the likely cause of the increase in breeding, causing an ever present problem for a property like Killerton House which houses one of the most important costume collections in the country.
Staff and volunteers at the property are all on ‘moth alert and posters are seen around the property asking any visitors who see a Clothes Moth to at once alert a member of staff.
The unveiling of the Crown
Most of the conservation work to the Crown Bar is now complete. The unusual mirrors from the snugs and the colourful mosaic glass from behind the bar will be re-fitted in September as one of the last conservation projects. Visitors and regular customers can now enjoy the Crown’s fantastic High Victorian decoration in a new light, with the original paint schemes unmasked and the woodwork, tiling and glasswork cleaned, conserved and rejuvenated. Why not visit and see the amazing transformation for yourself.
The Argory Project
The Argory project is nearing the end of its re-servicing phase. This included important electrical installations for fire detection, security and environmental controls, and much needed renovations to the windows. Over the next few months the house will have its contents unpacked and re-instated in their original places. The work carried out during the project will help to preserve this wonderful old building for many years to come. The property will re-open in March 2008.
The project to re-carve the large heraldic cats (Ounces) which had been eroding to shapeless blobs on their gate piers at Downhill is underway. To watch the progress of this project go to www.clivedonconservation.com. This website will show updated images of the consolidation of one of the original Ounces and the carving of the two new ones by the conservators and stone carvers of Clivedon Conservation.
St Catherines, Windermere
How’s your Footprint? The ‘Footprint’ is a new National Trust building at St Catherines, Windermere and is made of straw and other natural building materials. This inspirational place is primarily an education base for schools and is a wonderful example of how we can lessen our impact on the environment whilst at the same time creating an exciting educational and recreational space which compliments the existing landscape. The building was recently opened by the National Trust’s Director General, Fiona Reynolds.
Wedding license at Montacute House
Montacute House has become the latest NT property to obtain a wedding license. The Drawing Room, where the 19th century Phelips displayed their wedding presents is the venue for the ceremony with pictures in the garden. There is also the possibility of holding a reception in the grounds.
Facelift for the gargoyles
For the first time in over 140 years the magnificent Gargoyles at Knightshayes Court have had their faces washed. Clivedon Conservation undertook the delicate task of climbing 40ft scaffolding to come face to face with the handsome beauties and undertake necessary conservation work, restoring at least a grimace to their faces!
Anglesey Abbey Gallery
Anglesey Abbey was re-opened to the public on Wednesday August 1st, after over 18 months of work to restore this important section of the building to its original appearance under the First Lord Fairhaven.
‘My thoughts and hope is that in a changing world the house, its furniture and the gardens and their lay-out should be preserved and kept representative of an age and a way of life that is quickly passing’
Lord Fairhaven (1896-1966) Letter to the executors of his will 1964
The realisation of one man’s vision; the first Lord Fairhaven purchased Anglesey Abbey in 1926 and re-modelled the house and its grounds in a fusion of styles drawn from inspirations from around the world, and over the centuries. A great collector of art, Lord Fairhaven extended Anglesey to provide a fitting home for his superb and varied collection. And it’s the Gallery that’s ready for visitors to enjoy once again this August.
Anyone with an interest in art will be delighted by the work that’s been taking place to renovate the Upper and Lower Galleries of the house. Over several months, the National Trust has been working on restoring the interiors to their 1960s guise under Lord Fairhaven.
This restoration includes furnishings such as a 12 x 4 m hand made replica Aubusson carpet costing over £20,000 (due to arrive later this year); a brand new picture hang and lighting system presenting the 90 paintings for visitors to enjoy as they have never before been seen. A 1906 Steinway piano is also being reinstated, one of the finest instruments produced for its sound quality. Externally, renovation work has included repairing the lead roofing and exterior stonework, stabilising the loose floor in the Lower Gallery and repairing the existing hot water system.
The paintings which visitors will see re-instated in all their glory under new lighting include the most famous paintings of Lord Fairhaven’s collection: St. Philip baptising the Eunuch by Aelbert Cuyp (1620 – 91) and two superb paintings by the French master Claude Lorraine: The Father of Psyche sacrificing at the Temple of Apollo and The Landing of Aeneas at Palanteum painted in the seventeenth century.
It’s not only the Upper and Lower Galleries that are being worked on. In fact, it’s all change for Anglesey Abbey – with a brand new Redwoods restaurant recently opened, and extensive visitor facilities currently being completed that will offer visitors a contemporary shop and plant sales area.
Indian Festival at Powis Castle, Welshpool
An Indian Festival will be held on the grand lawn at Powis Castle, near Welshpool on 15 and 16 September to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Castle’s Clive of India Museum.
Activities will include Indian music and dancing, a re-enactment by the 33rd Regiment, special lectures and tours, sari demonstrations, henna painting and food and craft stalls.
The spectacular Indian artefacts on display at the Clive of India Museum range from a bejewelled silver huqqa opium pipe to a steel elephant goad (used when riding elephants) and some seriously scary daggers were all collected by Robert Clive (or “Clive of India”), the son of a Shropshire squire who became the heroic founder of Britain’s Indian Empire. In 1784, Lord Clive married into the Powis Herbert family, bringing the Clives’ vast fortune and art collections to the Castle. The Clive of India Museum was opened in 1987 by Countess Mountbatten of Burma.
Restoration at Mottisfont Abbey
A long-term restoration project will renew interest in the interior of this handsome old house in Hampshire.
Mrs Maud Russell, who lived at Mottisfont from the early 1930s, was a renowned society hostess and arbiter of good taste, but when she died in 1972, most of her possessions left the house and her influence on the interior design was inevitably diminished.
A new project will gradually restore the house to its elegant appearance in the mid-1950s, as captured by contemporary issues of Country Life magazine. Work completed so far includes the innovative reproduction of a magnificent Aubusson carpet in the Old Dining Room and new crimson damask curtains in the Long Gallery.
House Manager Emma Heywood says: “Funds to continue this project must be raised here at Mottisfont, so raffle ticket sales, proceeds from the 2nd hand bookshop, plus other donations and gifts, will play a crucial part in bringing the house back to life.”
Saltram re-servicing project
Over the decades the electrical wiring at Saltram has been tweaked, added to, updated - until today we have a mish-mash of various types of cables, routes in peculiar and un-useful places, inadequate amounts of sockets and lighting for today’s working needs leading to the same sort of overloading, trips and anxieties that you have in a normal old house. However, this old house has those problems on a massive scale!
So, after nearly two years in the planning, with the assistance of consultants and English Heritage who are kindly making a significant grant available to us to fund the works, we are just about to press the start button and move the contractors in!
This is going to cause all sorts of pandemonium in the house! Show rooms will have to be packed up in phases, all the offices will have to be moved around, the residents all have to move in with each other, and what about the pigeons!
Saltram will continue to welcome visitors until the end of October and visitors are likely to see more of the house than normal with floorboards and wall panelling moved to make way for essential work.
Visitors will also get the chance to see how lighting has evolved down the centuries and how the skills of the craftsmen are as important today when carefully placing wires through priceless ceilings as they have ever been.
The property will be running special tours during throughout the closed season, showing work in progress.
Come along and see how work is progressing to revive the interiors of the Regency mansion at Attingham Park, near Shrewsbury. This winter, the Attingham Re-discovered project will focus on historic wallpaper trials, intricate cleaning operations and furniture conservation.
Guided tours highlighting the project will take place at weekends during the winter.
Telford’s 250th Anniversary
Conwy Suspension Bridge - one of the first suspension bridges in the world, designed and built by Thomas Telford in 1826, is the appropriate setting for a series of special events celebrating the 250th anniversary of the birth of the legendary engineer, Thomas Telford.
Celebrations begin on August 9th, the actual anniversary of Telford’s birth, when members of the Institute of Civil Engineers’ Travelling Tribute will be transported in a vintage 1920’s bus onto Conwy Suspension Bridge, where they will unveil a commemorative plaque. They will be followed by a vintage car parade through the town. On Saturday August 11th, the bridge will open until 9pm, with free entry from 6pm. This event coincides with the town’s River Festival which has the ‘Telford 250’ yacht race, a lantern parade and stalls around the quay, culminating in a firework display over the adjoining castle. There are also free guided walk and talks on Sundays throughout August on the bridge.
During his life, Thomas Telford built more than one thousand miles of road, including the main road from London to Holyhead. It was during the construction of this ambitious project that he was invited to build a bridge spanning the Conwy estuary. Telford’s original plan was to build a cast-iron bridge but he changed his mind and decided on what was then a far more pioneering design. The impressive structure stands next to Conwy Castle, a world heritage site. Part of the castle actually had to be demolished during the bridge’s construction in order for the suspension cables to be anchored into the rock.
There are new plans afoot for the fire exhibition at Uppark House & Garden. Currently, visitors can see the artefacts saved from the fire being catalogued, photographed and cleaned in the exhibition building and learn more about what will happen to them in the future.
Conservation in Action at Basildon Park
Don’t miss this opportunity to see a conservation specialist at work at Basildon Park in Berkshire.
During the last two weeks of September you can see textile conservator, Victoria Allan, carrying out work to conserve and protect early 19th century silk damask curtains in the Dining Room at Basildon Park.
The curtains were purchased in the 1950s by Lady Iliffe at the Ashburnham Place sale. At the time, the use of old curtains in this way was very unusual and prompted John Cornforth to comment in Country Life magazine that “they add a great deal to the success of the house, giving a settled look that could not have been achieved with new ones.”
You can see this Conservation in Action at Basildon Park in the last two weeks of September, on Wednesday to Friday.
Volunteers go ‘green’ on the Lizard
A green building restoration project on the Lizard is set to reduce the Trust’s environmental footprint and provide much needed improvements to its full time volunteer accommodation.
A recent project, funded by two legacies and vital funding support from the Cornwall AONB’s Sustainable Development Fund, is setting the benchmark for future building renovation projects in Devon and Cornwall. Carleon House at Poltesco has housed Trust volunteers working on the Lizard since 1992. In that period more than 100 volunteers have stayed there, with over 15% going on to secure jobs with the Trust and over 70% in the environmental sector overall.
The restoration project was planned with environmental principles at its core; the refurbished accommodation includes high levels of insulation throughout using sheep’s wool, a new underfloor heating system driven by a ground source heat pump and a solar panel for water heating. Rainwater re-cycling is used to flush the loos, all light bulbs and appliances are energy efficient and natural paints and floor finishes have been used for decoration.
Full time volunteers based at Carleon House play a crucial role in all aspects of the Trusts’s conservation work on the Lizard Peninsula. Volunteering provides practical opportunities to help the Trust protect nationally important wildlife habitats and landscapes, whilst in return providing invaluable experience and training in practical countryside skills.
Tom Stoddart exhibition at Nunnington Hall
Visitors to Nunnington Hall this autumn will be the first to see a major photographic exhibition by one of the world’s most acclaimed photojournalists, Tom Stoddart. The Hall will be the venue for the first UK showing of Lest We Forget – Africa’s AIDS Crisis – a stunning chronicle of the lives of families living with Aids in sub-Saharan Africa.
Stoddart has worked across the world documenting life, and death, in some of the planet’s most harrowing environments, from the ethnic cleansing of Eastern Europe, to the aftermath of Chernobyl, the war in Iraq, to conflicts in the Middle East. In the first UK showing of the hard hitting Lest We Forget – The African Aids Crisis, Stoddart documents the spread and catastrophic impact of Aids in sub-Saharan Africa. A story unfolds of the courage, dignity and humour of the lives of those living with, or affected by the disease.
Nunnington Hall’s Property Manager Simon Lee says:
”I am delighted that Tom is showing his pictures here at Nunnington. It is a very thought provoking show and very pertinent to our times. His exhibition really does give a true sense of the subject and we are delighted to be working with Tom and bringing this exhibition to the north.”
The exhibition opens on Tuesday 10 September. Normal opening times and admission charges apply. The exhibition rooms are on the upper floor. For further details please telephone Nunnington Hall 01439 748283.
Wallington carbon footprint project
Climate change is big news at the moment. We all know we should be doing our bit to reduce fossil fuels usage and thus the amount of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere. But it can be hard to know exactly what to do, and even a bit daunting.
At the National Trust, Wallington is at the heart of a big push by the organisation to reduce its environmental impact. The Wallington Carbon Footprint Project will take place over three years and see the Trust working in partnership with Natural England, One North East and Durham University.
But what actually is carbon management? It will mean looking at the ways in which the Trust can be more energy efficient across the estate’s activities and buildings. It will also mean looking into how the property can make use of the renewable energy resources on the estate, including forestry, solar, water (hydro-power) and small-scale wind power.
Wallington was chosen as the pilot because of the wide range of activities that take place on the estate – farms, gardens, shops, restaurant, forestry, Wallington House and tenanted properties. The location is also a factor, as the property is in an area where there is pressure for large scale wind farm developments. The National Trust would like to show that there are other, more sympathetic ways of reducing carbon dioxide emissions.
Contact Sophie Gaffney on 01793 817706
After much restoration work, Reigate Fort is open from September 9 for visitors to enjoy all year round.
Reigate Fort was built in 1898 during a period of rapid changes in guns, ships and military tactics. It was part of a defence chain stretching for 72 miles from the North Downs to Essex, designed to protect London from foreign invaders landing on the South East coast.
One of thirteen new military installations, Reigate Fort was a mobilisation centre, holding digging tools for entrenching and cutting tools for clearing trees. It also held ammunition and gunpowder for artillery and infantry.
By 1906 the British Admiralty was confident that the naval forces could safeguard against invasion, so the centres were decommissioned. In 1972 they were designated as Scheduled Ancient Monuments because of their military significance. By the 1990s they had fallen into disrepair.
Since 2000 Reigate Fort’s story has taken turn for the better – the National Trust in partnership with Biffaward, The Heritage Lottery Fund, Norwich Union and many volunteers have helped to restore the fort so that the public can now enjoy it and learn all about its fascinating history. Information boards, a website with picture gallery, leaflets, a booklet, a teachers’ resource pack and guided tours of the interiors (which can be organised by calling on 01372 220644) will help visitors to gain greater insight into this important site.
Stourhead House – Pope’s Cabinet
One of the finest pieces of furniture in Europe, the sixteenth century Pope’s Cabinet, will be the star turn for the rest of the year at Stourhead House following the completion of a major conservation project. The thirteen feet high bejewelled cabinet has been painstakingly conserved in a workshop at Stourhead House and is now exhibited in the house’s Column Room in all its glory, as the centrepiece of a new exhibition.
Virtual Tour of Cragside with BSL
Cragside will be launching the National Trust’s first Virtual Tour in the North East from the end of July, to assist access for people with disabilities. The inclusion of British Sign Language is a result of active interest from the Newcastle Deaf Action Group, and will develop new insights to the property for BSL users.
The design of the virtual tour has been developed as a National Trust project, with disabled people inputting ideas and taking part in two testing sessions to evaluate the accessibility and usability of the virtual tour. Cragside is the first property in the Yorkshire and North East region to use this touch screen equipment to add to the interpretation of the site and the first property across the whole of the Trust to include the addition of BSL interpretation.
It’s all change at the Museum of Childhood
The National Trust Museum of Childhood is currently closed for a £2.2 million re-development that will see it transformed. The project is being funded by a £1.6 million award from the Heritage Lottery Fun and additional funding from the National Trust, The Betty Cadbury Trust, the National Trust South Derbyshire Centre and several generous legacies.
Since the Museum closed in October 2007, work has taken place to remove the collections into storage or for conservation work and a team of builders have installed a new mezzanine floor and a lift, providing increased space and access. Work is now progressing with Haley Sharpe Design Ltd on designing and installing the exhibitions in the Museum.
When the Museum re-opens in Spring 2008 it will provide fun and fascination for people of all ages and be a place where you can discover and share childhood experiences from the 19th century to the present day. Eight new galleries will uncover different aspects of childhood from toys and adventure to home life, school life and children at work, and will include historic objects, displays, film footage and lots of things to do!
The new Museum will increase in size by 50%, have more objects on display presented under improved conservation conditions, provide improved accessibility with a new upper floor with lift access and have increased capacity for learning.
In 2007, whilst the Museum is being re-developed, Sudbury Hall will be open for business as usual and in addition to exploring the Hall visitors will be able to visit the recreated Victorian School Room and the mini Museum which is currently home to the V & A Museum of Childhood touring exhibition, Must-have Toys.
Volunteering for all - successful new partnership for the National Trust & Mencap
The National Trust in the North West has recently been working with Mencap to help people with a learning disability realise their potential as volunteers. Volunteering for All is an innovative project, with two main aims - an increase in volunteer numbers to help us in our conservation and access work; and Mencap actively promoting interesting volunteering opportunities for people with a learning disability.
Pilot projects have been held at Alderley Edge and Quarry Bank Mill in Cheshire, and Speke Hall in Liverpool.
The Trust is to begin making sustainable changes to its ways of working enabling us to offer more volunteering opportunities for people with particular needs. Volunteers are vital to our work and without them we would not be able to offer the access to our properties enjoyed by many millions of visitors each year.
Contact Sophie Gaffney on 01793 817706
25 years of Bankes Estate, Dorset
This September, the Trust will be marking 25 years since the acquisition of the Bankes Estate in Dorset. The estate includes the spectacular Kingston Lacy mansion, gardens, parkland and agricultural land, Corfe Castle and Common, Purbeck – heathlands, coastline and the popular Studland Beach. The estate was gifted to the Trust under the will of HJR Bankes in 1982.
What’s in your attic?
Tatton Park in Cheshire is appealing to anyone who knows the location of old documents relating to the Egerton family, who owned and lived at Tatton from 1598 until it was given to the National Trust in 1958, to get in touch! The documents will be used by Tatton to complete its own archives.
Tatton Park has a wide and varied archive – at the estate is a small collection, mostly related to the Egerton family. Other documentation has been lodged by Tatton Park with the Cheshire Record Office and the John Rylands University Library of Manchester, by doing so Tatton Park has made its collection more accessible to the public. Both Cheshire Record Office and John Rylands Library can offer access to these documents by arrangement.
Anyone who thinks they have archive material relating to the Egerton family or the Tatton Park estate should contact, or send documents, anonymously if they wish, to Caroline Schofield, Mansion Manager, Tatton Park, Knutsford, Cheshire, WA16 6QN. Alternatively telephone 01625 374408. All enquiries, donations and messages will be treated with strictest confidence.
Tyntesfield trial guided tours upstairs
This autumn, Tyntesfield will be piloting the first tours upstairs in the house since it was opened to visitors by the Trust. Visitors to Tyntesfield thus far have been able to explore the ground floor family rooms and servants wing, as well as the Chapel. Dates to be confirmed.
Launch of Hardwick textiles book
The National Trust’s Hardwick Hall houses a world famous collection of 15th and 16th century textiles that were collected and commissioned by Bess of Hardwick as a statement of her immense wealth and power. In her latest book Santina Levey explains to the reader the details behind the embroideries.
In the first ever catalogue of this extraordinary collection Santina Levey looks at each piece in turn, explaining the context to its creation, its symbolism, materials, workmanship and history. Grouped by type, the book throws new light on the ways in which they were displayed and even re-used at different periods of their past. The book also explains the remarkable range of techniques used on the embroideries and provides fascinating new information on design sources and motifs.
Santina Levey is an expert in 16th and 17th century textiles. She worked at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London for 20 years, the last nine of them as Keeper of the Department of Textiles. She first visited Hardwick Hall in 1967, since when she has become the foremost specialist on the textiles there.
Cragside iron footbridge restoration
The next stage in the £6 million regeneration of Cragside is the restoration of the Iron Footbridge. The bridge connects the house with its Formal Garden and would have provided Lord and Lady Armstrong and their guests with a more direct and captivating route across the Debdon Burn.
The bridge, which was built before 1874, is a designated Grade Il* listed building. It is in a poor state of repair and has been closed to the general public since 1979 in the interests of safety.
Sadly, the designer of the bridge is unknown, but, as with so much else at Cragside, it is thought to have been a product of the engineering genius of Armstrong himself and was probably fabricated at his Elswick Works in Newcastle. It owes much to Armstrong’s shipbuilding technology, using extensive riveting and having a “deck”.
The bridge will require a lot of work including sympathetic structural repairs, stripping down and repainting, replacement of the timber deck, strengthening of the stone piers and replacement and strengthening of the balustrades.
The National Trust will start repairs in spring 2008 but we need your help. Returning the bridge to its original splendour will cost £600,000, we are asking the public to help us by making a donation to the project. One of the 50 balustrades which will cost £800 each, and the new deck of 350 planks, will cost £120 for 10.
Works to restore the Boathouse at Belton House are nearing completion. Whilst many landscape parks of 18th and 19th century country houses had lakes with boathouses, surprisingly few boathouses remain today. At Belton House a 19th century Boathouse designed by Anthony Salvin is in the process of being restored. Drawings show that the main room was designed as a “fishing room”, with a projecting balcony with a rustic twig work balustrade beneath which there was a boat positioned. Early photographs show a balcony constructed with flat timber balusters and also a fish scale roof finish.
The Boathouse had become fallen into disrepair by the middle of the 20th century and a major project to fully restore the boathouse is now in progress, ensuring that much of the original building is retained and this important landscape building is restored.
To help visitors to understand more about the restoration of the Boat House, the Property Manager and the craftsmen involved have been conducting a series of guided tours around the site to tell people more about this exciting project. To date the guided tours have included demonstrations on-site of the techniques used to trim the ‘fish scale’ slates and stonemasonry.
New winter opening for Sizergh Castle, Kendal, Cumbria
This winter for the first time you can visit Sizergh every winter weekend.
The Café, shop and grounds will be open every weekend throughout the winter until mid March, including Boxing Day through to 2 January; then everyday from 9 – 24 February. You can pick up a self-guided walks leaflet at reception; then blow away the cobwebs up on Helsington Barrows or a gentle stroll to Brigsteer.
Reflecting on Dunham’s silver
Dunham Massey’s collection of Silver plate, made by the best Huguenot goldsmiths of the first half of the 18th century comes under the spotlight in a new book by James Rothwell and James Lomax. ‘Country House Silver from Dunham Massey’. The book tells how the silver was used at Dunham, and groups it by original function within the house, as well as examining this quality collection in detail for the first time. The lavishly illustrated catalogue is available from the Dunham Massey shop – a mail order service is also available.(£40).
Treasures of the Eastern Museum
The Eastern Museum at Kedleston Hall has received an extensive revamp. The museum is filled with the collections of Lord Curzon which he accumulated on his tours of Asia in 1887, 1890 and 1894, and also whilst he was Viceroy of India from 1899 – 1905. The recent revamp has included the re-cataloguing of the collection, along with the re-lining and re-lighting of the cases which has made a huge difference to the visual display. In addition to this there is now a self guided tour highlighting objects in the newly restored exhibition. Elements of the new interpretation in the Museum, including a listening post and a textile hanging, were developed in conjunction with local Asian people and groups who worked with artists to explore the collections. The project will be celebrated at an event in October 2007.
For the first time ever, you can visit Standen every weekend up until Christmas.
This beautiful Arts & Crafts house, designed by Philip Webb, will be open every weekend until December 16. During November the first floor of the house will be put to bed and visitors will be able to witness how the Trust carefully prepares its properties for the winter. In December, while the first floor is closed, the ground floor will be decorated in Christmas splendour and lit with its original light fittings, just as it would have been when the Beale family lived there. Plus, the shop and tea room will be open for visitors to enjoy some seasonal treats and stock up on their Christmas shopping.
This year, after undergoing extensive restoration, the Trust has reunited three works of art with their rightful homes.
After a successful fundraising campaign, Francis Barlow’s 11 foot by 9 foot paintings – ‘Landscape with Birds and Fishes’ and ‘Decoy’ – which were brought to Clandon Park in Surrey by the Onslow family in the 1730’s, were taken away for conservation. They have now returned complete with an exhibition that describes the restoration process and illustrates the difference before and after the work took place.
At Nymans in West Sussex ‘Christ blessing the children’ or ‘the triptych’, as it has become known, was one of many paintings decorating the walls of Nymans when Leonard Messel and his wife Maud lived in the house. Some time after it was reclaimed at auction, the piece was sent to students at the Courtauld Institute to be restored to its former glory and after several years of work it now hangs proudly in its original position.