Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village

Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village in Surrey commissioned Cliveden Conservation to create a bespoke winter cover to protect the ornamental nineteenth-century terracotta well head (Grade II listed) designed by Mary Watts.

Project overview

Project overview
Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village in Surrey commissioned Cliveden Conservation to create a bespoke winter cover to protect the ornamental nineteenth-century terracotta well head (Grade II listed) designed by Mary Watts. The well head was added by Mary to Compton Cemetery (also known as Watts Cemetery) in 1906.

Summary of the conservation work carried out
Cliveden Conservation’s Winter Covers which protect sculpture and decorative stonework during the winter months are carefully made to measure. Cliveden Conservation instructed Watts Gallery on how to take the required measurements to ensure the well head would be fully covered and protected. Due to the awkward shape of the well head, Cliveden Conservation recommended using a cylindrical cover.

The winter cover, which took one week to manufacture, was created using a tried and tested three layered moisture impermeable system which is windproof, waterproof, insulating and provides UV protection.

Straps were provided to ensure the cover remained secure during the winter months. The cover was quick and easy to fit.

Results
Cliveden Conservation worked closely with Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village to successfully design and manufacture a tailor-made cover to thermally protect the well head from potential damage caused by freezing and wet winter conditions. The winter cover has a lifespan of 8 – 10 years and is machine washable so Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village now has a convenient and sustainable way to protect the well head in the cemetery. 

Project details

Client:

Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village

Principal Conservation Contractor:

Cliveden Conservation 

Category:

Advisory and material analysis

What we did

“We were looking for a cover to provide thermal protection for the well-head over the winter months; as it is waterproof and windproof, we hope to reduce the risk of damage from exposure to the cold and wet conditions. It is also important for the cover to fit into our landscape, sympathetically sitting within the cemetery grounds. We are pleased with the results and always look forward to uncovering the well-head in each Spring.”

Emma Coburn, Collections Manager

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