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550 years of grime cleaned away at St. Peter’s Church

Working from the scaffolding: Howard Chivers & Peter Martindale cleaning stoneworkWorking from the scaffolding: Howard Chivers & Peter Martindale cleaning stoneworkVisitors to St. Peter’s Church in Marlborough will soon be able to appreciate the newly cleaned and renovated North Aisle after a major project to restore it to its original glory.

 


The project which has cost over £20,000, has been carried out by specialist church conservators Peter Martindale, Jay Battle, and Howard Chivers.


David Du Croz, is Chair of the St. Peter’s Trust: “The North Aisle has not been cleaned since the Trust took over forty years ago and the stone window frames have not been cleaned in 550 years! Years and years of candle smoke added to the grime. The damp had got in in places and the surfaces degraded." 

"We have built up sufficient reserves as a result of benefactors and the good people of Marlborough so we have been able to pay for these renovations.”

A renovation of the South Aisle is planned for next year.

 Peter Martindale restoring the Decalogues Peter Martindale restoring the DecaloguesSparkling stone work after the cleaning process along St Peter’s North Aisle Sparkling stone work after the cleaning process along St Peter’s North Aisle Church conservator, Peter Martindale told marlborough.news: “We used a variety of techniques. What made the process exciting was the figuring out what best to do in order to solve the problems of centuries of grime to everyone’s satisfaction.”

Particularly tricky was the cleaning of the two panels depicting the Ten Commandments – the decalogues. Previous treatments had complicated matters so cleaning had to be carried out in a two phase process.

Despite the scaffolding, which will be taken down next Wednesday, St. Peter’s café and craft shop are very much open.

“It’s been particularly good working above a café,” commented Peter. "It’s very entertaining and there are always large mugs of tea on hand!”

“St Peter’s,” says David Du Croz, “is a wonderful example of a community project in action, providing local residents and visitors alike with a beautifully preserved historic building for the use and appreciation by anyone and everyone.”

The Trust is always looking for more volunteers. In particular, volunteer help is needed in the garden and with tours of the tower in the summer months.  There is more information about becoming a Friend of the Trust or/and to volunteer here.



















 

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