Conservation work at Packwood

View of Packwood from the road

Many of the conservation projects we carry out here at Packwood are due to supporters like you giving back to the property in so many ways. Our visitors directly help us to conserve Packwood in all sorts of ways from enjoying a favourite cake in the cafe, to bringing the kids along to our Halloween trail and thorugh yearly membership.

The team here at Packwood, as well as specialist conservators, carry out vital conservation projects which are made possible due to our visitors. Here are a few examples of some recent conservation work that has been possible due to this funding.

The Coach House Well

Here at Packwood we’re committed to running the property in a sustainable way and how we can use our natural resources to run the property more economically.

The creation of the new café and visitor centre has seen our visitors numbers grow dramatically over the past few years. Along with the development of the Kitchen Garden this has brought about a steep increase in our demand for water. So, we decided to reduce our reliance on mains water by bringing one of Packwood’s two original wells back in to working order.

Prior to the introduction of mains water, many settlements; particularly rural ones, would have relied on a well for their water supply. Packwood’s two wells, one located under the house, provides water for domestic use. The other well, located across the road, next to the old coach house would have supplied water for the Kitchen Garden and livestock.

The summer months in Packwood's Kitchen Garden
Packwood's Kitchen Garden flower borders
The summer months in Packwood's Kitchen Garden

This new system has now been installed and provides us with our own free supply of fresh water for the; Kitchen Garden, plant sales area and visitor toilets.
 

Conserving Queen Margaret’s Bed

We are currently restoring the bed hangings of Queen Margaret’s Bed with the help of a freelance textile conservator based in Warwick. This includes deep cleaning of the bed and hangings alongside preventative conservation which includes looking for things like mould, pests and damage.

Repair works being carried out on Queen Margaret's bed by the textile conservator, Victoria Allan.
Textile conservator Victoria Allan working on Queen Margarets bed at Packwood House, Warwickshire.
Repair works being carried out on Queen Margaret's bed by the textile conservator, Victoria Allan.

The conservator has recently been working in situ on the hangings which has allowed for the completion of the stitching to the corners of the inside of the tester. The next time you visit Packwood you may see her working on the delicate hangings.

The Causeway

The Great Pool at Packwood measures over three acres, with the causeway, a walk along the dam of the pool leading from the gardens to the parkland.

A view of the lake towards the causeway
A view of the lake towards the causeway
A view of the lake towards the causeway

The causeway wall has deteriorated and is now endangering the dam which is holding back the water in the Great Pool. It is essential that these sections of the wall are repaired quickly and we were fortunate to receive funding from Natural England to carry out the first phase of this work in 2015. On the lake bed is a water source heat pump, used to heat the house and keep the historic collection safe from environmental harm, including humidity and damp.

The second stage of works well under way
The work being carried out on the causeway last year
The second stage of works well under way

The first phase of work began in August 2015 and was successful in repairing the first 25 metres of wall. In August 2016 work to repair the next 25 metre section during the second phase was successfully completed. After hitting some snags during May through August of 2017 we were able to complete just under 50 metres more. This means in the autumn of 2018 we should be able to complete the work required and secure the great pool for the next 200 years. This year our Special Places Raffle is raising money to complete the causeway works, if you would like to buy a raffle ticket on your next visit please ask a member of staff.

The vital conservation work we carry out here at Packwood wouldn’t be possible without supporters like you giving through membership, admissions, the restaurant and shop, and donations. Thank you.