Conservation during lockdown

Although the Museum has had to close to the public, there has been essential work being carried out to maintain care of the historic collection.

Thatching of the medieval cottage from Hangleton, Sussex

The thatching of the medieval cottage from Hangleton was complete by 19 March and through this series of images below you can follow the progress of Chris Tomkin’s team of thatchers, Andy and Daryl, as the removed all the old thatch, attached the new battens that had been cut for them from Museum woodland, attached the new thatch and finished with the ridge and dressing the roof. We hope visitors will enjoy seeing the finished product of this craftsmanship in visits coming up.

The House from North Cray

We are nearing the end of the phase of carpentry repairs on North Cray. This started at the very beginning of February. Surveys to the timber frame prior to that had confirmed the assessment that there were repairs needed. Internal timbers are remarkably well preserved but some external timbers have suffered from surface decay to differing degrees. As part of a normal programme of maintenance at a museum, the condition of an item in the collection will be assessed and then stabilised as required.

As building rather than a smaller artefact, North Cray may seem different but the same principle applies and we want to preserve as much of the original fabric as possible. This was one of the earlier buildings put up on the Museum site, re-erected in 1984, therefore it is not surprising that repairs are now needed and the repairs are designed to last at least another 37 years.

The images below show elements of the carpentry work to date.