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Renaissance paintings on a bedroom wall at a Herefordshire farm

Hereford Voice

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One of the Renaissance wall paintings at Church House Farm in Herefordshire. Photograph: Courtesy of John Stevenson


A discovery of exceptional Renaissance wall paintings at a Herefordshire farmhouse has prompted a leading expert to warn that the chances of such treasures surviving in domestic settings in Britain are falling because owners are destroying them by modernising their homes.

Stephen Rickerby, who is a consultant to the Getty Conservation Institute and works closely with the Courtauld Institute and English Heritage, was taken aback by the “stunning and extremely high quality” of paintings dating from the late 16th and early 17th centuries that have been uncovered at Church House Farm in Wellington.

Although the Herefordshire discovery was made in 2018, it has taken until now to expose the full scheme of paintings, as well as to consult historians, including specialists from Historic England, and to plan its conservation.

The owners have had to move out of their bedroom into a spare room. The coronavirus lockdown has delayed plans to apply for a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund as it could involve up to £20,000 for painting restoration.

Article: The Guardian 5th December 2020

It's not only rivers that are at risk with this urge to modernise and improve for the natural beauty of things to disappear.

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