Repairing and maintaining roofs are a costly business and more so when a large historic building is involved!
Orangery at Montacute House
The orangery at Montacute House, National Trust, has re-opened with a new roof and 2,380 glass panes all refitted into their correct place.
With each pane of glass a different size, the restoration presented a huge jigsaw puzzle for the National Trust building team who carried out the work following the collapse of the roof nearly three years ago.
The roof had collapsed under the weight of snow and, with most of the timbers rotting and needing to be replaced, the National Trust building team had a huge task to carefully remove the glazed roof and restore it to the original standard.
‘There were 2380 panes of glass in the roof – most of them different sizes – which turned this into a giant sized jigsaw puzzle for the building team,’ said Lottie Allen, Parks and Garden Manager
A raffle had raised over £10,000 which paid for scaffolding and materials so the Montacute building team could get to grips with carefully dismantling and rebuilding the fragile roof.
The glass panes were recorded and carefully removed and the roof dismantled – all done in sight of visitors who were able to climb to a platform on the scaffolding and see the work close up.
Thought to date from about 1840, the orangery was originally used to over winter orange trees which spent the summer on the terrace by the house. To recreate that effect, clipped bay trees have been used. ‘I’d love to put the oranges back but for the moment we have the bay trees and we’re just celebrating the work to restore the orangery which looks great, our visitors all love it , many having watched it being repaired.’
There is a cascade inside the orangery which would have been installed to increase humidity levels for the plants. It is hoped to restore it as well in due course.
More information about Montacute House is available on www.nationaltrust.org.uk/montacutehouse
Rooflights fitted in English Heritage and National Trust usually have to match the old style period rooflights. At Howells Glazing we have carried out a job at Beningbrough Hall using our team of fixers using our English Heritage approved systems.
We use Pilkington Glass in our rooflights, canopies etc as they are an established company and household name. We have various glass options such as Pilkington suncool 60/40, patterned glass, Pilkington Activ self cleaning etc.
We have also have worked at Longford Castle.
Situated near Salisbury in Wiltshire, with the River Avon running through its ground is one of the most maginficinet of English Country Houses.