Here Les is renewing the oil finish that protects the oak North Hall door. First he has rubbed down, with an abrasive pad, the previous year's coat, which also cleans the door and prepares it for the oil. After a thorough rub down and dusting off Les applied diluted tung oil, a drying oil that is highly effective in protecting wood outdoors, and dries to a matt finish. The wood is protected, the colour is saturated, and the whole appearance of the door is given a lift.
Here Lynne and Louise are weeding and clearing up leaves in the coal cellar area, just outside the north cellars. Exposed to the elements, and sheltered, makes it an area that is prone to plant growth. Unsightly, but also potentially damaging to pointing, and possible harbourages for rodents. These might all seem like minor tasks but someone has got to do them and, taken in the round, these sorts of tasks make a huge difference to care, presentation, and service delivery.
Even seemingly minor details are important to get right in the context of a Listed building, down to the correct repair of the exterior door handle of North Hall door. After decades of wear the pin, holding the wonderful Victorian handle, had worn close to the point where it would fall out, with the consequential loss of the handle. An effective repair was specified to a suitably skilled metalworker, who has a long-standing working relationship with Temple Newsam's metalworking needs. Continuity of care is of paramount importance when looking after heritage assets.
Posted by Ian Fraser