Conservation at Christmas

When the doors open to reveal the festive finery of the mansion, you may not know all of work that has been done to make sure our collection is as safe as possible during the Christmas season.

Unlike your decorations at home. Mansions, such as ours, have to contend with aging collections and delicate rooms. But don't worry, despite restrictions you will still see Christmas trees drenched in baubles and foliage on the hearth this December. To combat threats such as pests, water and dropping needles, we have put down protective sheeting, acid free tissue paper and hoover the floors every day. The crackle of the fireplace and the warmth of flickering candles are a must at this time of year. However, fire poses a threat so we use LED lights in our fireplaces and battery candles in our chandeliers and scones instead.

As our decorations reflect the adventures, travels and triumphs of the Ansons, we have brought in some props to our wonderful spaces. To do so, these items have gone through quarantine and treatments to ensure they are pest free before entering the mansion. This treatment often involves time in a freezer to eradicate any carpet beetle or wood worm.  

We make sure that all of our decorations are fixed in a reversible way so that after Christmas, holes or marks are not left on walls. Decorations are carefully picked to ensure there is no loose glitter or real coloured berries that may leave stains or marks. Otherwise, we will be finding glitter around the mansion forever more.

It takes over 40 volunteers one week to dress the Mansion
Volunteer decorating a Christmas tree of coins
It takes over 40 volunteers one week to dress the Mansion

The clear up.

Another important, and large, part of our Christmas experience in the mansion is the clear up.  Once the mansion is closed on the 23rd December, a big clear up begins. All decorations will be carefully removed to storage and all pine needles, decorations and dust is carefully taken away as soon as possible. Then begins our winter deep clean until the mansion reopens in March.