A la Ronde Roof Project

Roof slates ALR

The roof is now watertight. Thank you to everyone who has supported the project so far by sponsoring a slate, buying a raffle ticket and all the generous donations we have received. This work will enable vital conservation to the shell gallery.

The shell gallery was being damaged by water due to a leaky roof. It's not just shells, there is also bones, feathers, lichen, watercolours, seaweed, crushed minerals, fir cones, starfish and other materials. 

Watercolour that has been damaged in the shell gallery
Watercolour ALR
Watercolour that has been damaged in the shell gallery

Before work could begin a special 16-sided scaffolding had to be put up, this took around 6 weeks to do.  There's not many 16-sided scaffolding structures in the world so this was a big task in itself. 

16 sided scaffolding at A la Ronde, Devon
A la Ronde Scaffolding
16 sided scaffolding at A la Ronde, Devon

1,500 delabole slates were used to make the roof watertight. After taking the old slates off, investigation work was undertaken on the roof to make sure there were no additional problems. Luckily there weren't, although there were some interesting finds including heart decoration on the chimneys. 

Chimneys with heart decoration
chimneys ALR
Chimneys with heart decoration

A plaster specialist identified work needed to wall paintings in the Shell Gallery which had to be completed before the slates were screwed on. These were screwed rather than hammered which ensured limited vibrations to the Shell Gallery. 

Brand new delabole roof slates
Roof slates ALR
Brand new delabole roof slates

The finishing touches. 

The windows in the shell gallerty have been replaced with smart tint which will allow the conservation team to control the amount of light that goes into the gallery. 

The wooden boarding that goes around the outside of the gallery windows has been replaced with new boards. This walkway is crucial to allow maintenance work to be carried out. 

The scaffolding has now been taken down. Thank you to everyone who has supported the project so far by sponsoring a slate, buying a raffle ticket and all the generous donations we have received. This work will enable vital conservation to the shell gallery.