Help us Save England's Wall Paintings
With irreplaceable centuries-old paintings at risk, English Heritage is appealing for donations to conserve our country’s painted history.
England's wall paintings are at risk, with a catalogue of threats causing them to deteriorate. English Heritage yesterday launched an appeal to support the conservation of these irreplaceable treasures and is calling on the public for support.
The Charity cares for 77 wall paintings, the country’s largest and most significant collection. This collection stretches as far back as the painted walls at Lullingstone Roman Villa in Kent and includes the Victorian gothic decoration at St Mary’s Church Studley Royal in North Yorkshire. Many of the wall paintings in the collection are at medieval abbeys, priories and churches, ranging from simple decoration to large-scale religious scenes and include the internationally-important art at St Mary’s Church, Kempley in Gloucestershire.
At Risk And Under Siege
From the damp English climate, to failed early 20th-century restoration attempts to the very buildings they are housed in, these irreplaceable artworks – some even older than those in the Sistine Chapel – are at risk from a number of factors and each faces a unique combination of threats, including:
- The weather: Unlike the well-preserved paintings in France and Italy’s warmer climates, England’s wall paintings are being increasingly affected by damp and wetter weather which is causing damage to their fragile structure.
- Poor past restoration: Advances in conservation practice have shown that previous restoration efforts from the early 20th century have in fact done more harm than good as substances such as soluble nylon (originally intended to prevent damage) are causing increased flaking.
- The ancient buildings they are in: Unlike traditional paintings on canvas, wall paintings are fixed to their historic surroundings, meaning that they face all the challenges faced by their centuries-old buildings.
Latest News from
Winter Solstice Sunrise to be Live Streamed From Stonehenge05/11/2020 16:33:00
Due to the pandemic, English Heritage cannot host the usual celebrations at the prehistoric stones.
Blue Plaque For Artist Barbara Hepworth30/10/2020 12:02:00
Sculptors Barbara Hepworth and John Skeaping honoured at their London home and studio, 24 St Ann's Terrace in St John's Wood.
New Portrait of Queen Victoria’s African Goddaughter Goes on Display at Osborne07/10/2020 12:25:00
English Heritage commissions portraits of black figures associated with its historic sites to tell previously overlooked stories.
New Poems Tell The Untold Stories of English Heritage01/10/2020 16:08:00
Six poets have been commissioned by English Heritage for a new digital anthology, including its Poet in Residence who leads a poetry programme to launch Black History Month
London's Blue Plaques, Statues And Black Lives Matter17/06/2020 13:10:00
English Heritage looks after 48 statues and monuments in London, including the Cenotaph and Marble Arch.
Unsung Heroes of Dunkirk Evacuation Revealed on 80th Anniversary26/05/2020 15:48:00
Dunkirk 1940: The Making of the Miracle – English Heritage's online event tells the story of the evacuation day-by-day.
Working From Home: English Heritage Style06/04/2020 15:48:00
As sites remain closed to the public, English Heritage staff are taking some weird and wonderful work home with them.
Shropshire Woodland That Hid Charles II to be Restored17/03/2020 12:33:00
New trees will be planted in the grounds of Boscobel House, propagated from the DNA of the Royal Oak linked to Charles II.