By Aoife Murphy
As our first month draws to a close we have been thinking about what has jumped out at us the most. We couldn’t actually choose though. This nonstop month has thrown so much exciting information our way.
I have particularly enjoyed trying out the trades. We have had the opportunity to try work in a forge, plaster using materials like wattle and daub, carve lime wood, carve chalk stone, hew timber and rub bricks. This has given me a new appreciation for the detail and skill involved.
We’ve had a chance to visit well-known beautiful places such as Canterbury Cathedral and Hampton Court Palace. However we got a different view to most people. We got to go up on roofs, behind closed doors and into the workshops.
Every site visit has been unique and interesting for a different reason. The smaller sites such as Brook Hall and Landguard Fort have been fascinating as the work being carried out tries to be respectful to previous reincarnations of the building.
The people we have visited every day are so passionate about their work. It’s a pleasure listening to their stories. My favourite topic is how they have fallen into conservation. Everyone has a unique path into the area. There is no direct route. You have to seek it out.
For the first two weeks we got to spend a lot of time with the Fellows. This is something I feel should be encouraged as much as possible. The different knowledge and points of view open great dialogue and discussion.
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