Meet the conservators

The Knole Conservation Studio is home to six highly-skilled conservators, specialising in everything from upholstery to leather and picture frames. They will work on most items from Knole’s collection in the conservation studio. See them at work in the studio from Wednesday to Saturday every week.

Our new team of conservators at Knole

In keeping with Knole’s philosophy, objects are given minimalist intervention, with the emphasis on stabilising and preserving them for the future. Our top team will focus on Knole’s own magnificent collection for the next two years.

After that, the conservation studio will be available to work on objects from other National Trust properties, museums, historic houses, galleries and private collections.

Heather Porter in the Conservation Studio at Knole

Heather Porter

Heather is a specialist in upholstery and joins Knole with a CV that would be any conservator’s dream. Heather now brings the benefit of her considerable experience to Knole where she has a particular interest in researching the original construction methods of the collection.

Gerry Alabone in the Conservation Studio at Knole

Gerry Alabone

Gerry joins Knole from the Tate Gallery where he was head of picture frames conservation between 2004 and 2016. The relationship between painting, frame and setting is often complicated, Gerry’s job is to assess the significance of a frame and make recommendations for its treatment. He also lectures part-time at the City and Guilds London Art School.

Carmen Vida in the Conservation Store at Knole

Carmen Vida

Carmen is an objects conservator, specialising in 3D objects such as wood, leather and metal. The ability to pass on her knowledge whilst interacting with visitors in this new, purpose built space is one of the most satisfying aspects of her role.

Judy Wetherall in the Conservation Studio at Knole

Judy Wetherall

Judy studied conservation at the City and Guilds of London Art School and, following periods in Italy and Germany, she set up her own conservation studio in 1977. She joined Knole last year and also lectures part-time at West Dean College in Sussex and works as a freelance conservator for the National Trust at Chartwell.

Mark Searle in the Conservation Studio at Knole

Mark Searle

Mark has spent most of his time tucked away in Knole’s back rooms since starting last summer, but has now emerged from those dusty rooms to work in the Conservation Studio. As a longtime admirer of Knole’s collection, Mark is delighted to have the chance to work in the studio and share his knowledge with visitors to the house.

Siobhan Barratt in the Conservation Studio at Knole

Siobhan Barratt

As head of Knole’s pioneering conservation studio, Siobhan is passionate about showing visitors exactly what conservators do and sharing their knowledge of the collection.