Behind the Scenes with Tabley House | Knutsford Times

Behind the Scenes with Tabley House

By on December 7, 2012

The doors may be closed to the public at The Tabley House Collection, Knutsford but that doesn’t mean that all is quiet. 

In fact the house is buzzing with conservation volunteers dusting, cleaning, cataloguing and condition checking the 11,000 + items in the Collection.

The Collection Trust would love to have more people involved and have started a recruitment drive to encourage anyone with an interest in history, architecture or art and looking for something to do in their spare time to come along and try their hand.

Anna Bates, who manages the Winter Conservation programme said “There are over 3500 books in the collection alone that need some tender loving care, as well as the fine furniture and decorative arts pieces on permanent display that require annual care and attention.  This year we’re also determined to re-discover some of the many treasures we have in storage.  Already we’ve been able to further document many items that initially held very little information on our database. It is a privilege to learn about many of these items and help preserve them and improve access to them for years to come.”

It was working on the storage boxes last year that allowed The Tabley House Collection to stage two temporary exhibitions in honour of the Jubilee and the Olympics.  The team are hopeful that they will be able develop a few more special displays for the 2013 season.

The Tabley House Collection welcomes Volunteers of all ages from 18 – 80 plus.  In recent months the team have been joined by a number of graduate recruits keen to put some of their newly gained skills to use to build up their CV for future job opportunities in arts and leisure.

Anna Bates continues; “We like to tailor the volunteer experience to the particular interests of individuals and tasks can range from heavy cleaning to delicate work with a cotton bud, and would suit any body with a passion for the arts. You don’t need past experience in conservation as we offer training here at Tabley .”

During the Summer months volunteers also get the opportunity to pass on their knowledge as room stewards when the house is open to the public, though some prefer to stay in the background continuing with the conservation work.

Anyone interested in finding out more about volunteering at The Tabley House Collection should call 01565 750151 or drop the team a line on

Submitted by Lindsey Harrison

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