The Through the Roof Project is moving on at a pace now and in this last week lots has been happening.  One of the most exciting things is the discovery that the area underneath the lead over our two jib staircases is probably original and we have revealed the wooden boards and handmade nails that have not been seen for 200 years.

Removing the original lead on the jib staircases.

Removing the original lead on the jib staircases.

The original boards revealed.  The boards are held in place with hand made iron nails.

The original boards revealed. The boards are held in place with hand made iron nails.

While this was taking place the outer lantern protecting the stained glass lantern on the Nash Staircase was being prepared for removal.

Outer lantern with glass still in place.

Outer lantern with glass still in place.

The outer lantern is being removed to allow us to access the stained glass lantern below, but also to be refurbished and to have a new layer of opening windows added to the base so access to the stained glass will be less complicated in the future.

The glass was removed carefully before each wrought iron bar was removed and numbered.

Removing the glass from the outer lantern.

Removing the glass from the outer lantern.

The glass removed from the outer lantern leaving just the outer lantern bars.

The glass removed from the outer lantern leaving just the outer lantern bars.

All the work was done by Barr and Grosvenor who have an iron foundry and are traditional iron-workers.

After the lantern was removed it gave us access to the filthy stained glass below.

The outer lantern completely removed leaving the stained glass lantern uncovered

The outer lantern completely removed leaving the stained glass lantern uncovered

The difference a clean can make and showing the amount of dirt that has accumulated over the years.

The difference a clean can make – showing the amount of dirt that has accumulated over the years.

The difference a careful hoover on a low suction can make

The difference a careful hoover on a low suction can make.

The glass is now cleaner than it has been for many years!  In the next few weeks a specialist conservator will be on site to remove the stained glass piece by piece.  It will be cleaned and stored ready for reinstatement after the repairs to the wooden glazing bars have taken place and the new lead has been laid. We are also having the glass tested for composition and age as there is a mystery as to when the stained glass was installed – it is not John Nash’s original lantern.

The hoovered glass.  The stained glass will be removed, cleaned and conserved before being returned after the lead is replaced.

The hoovered glass. The stained glass will be removed, cleaned and conserved before being returned after the lead is replaced.

All images come from our very talented Through the Roof Volunteer Photographer Richard Knisely-Marpole.

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