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Icon welcomes individuals and organisations from all backgrounds who identify with the conservation and preservation of our cultural heritage.  Our membership embraces the entire conservation community as well as members of the public who are keen to learn more or show their support for conservation work.


Welcome to the website of Icon, the lead voice for the conservation of cultural heritage in the UK. Icon's membership embraces the wider conservation community, incorporating not only professional conservators in all disciplines, but all others who share a commitment to improving understanding of and access to our cultural heritage.

Exciting opportunity for new conservators to gain experience and learn

The June Baker Trust is delighted to announce an exciting new grants scheme dedicated to helping Scottish conservators at an early stage in their careers to make a smooth transition from education to the workplace and establish themselves in the profession.

The scheme has been made possible thanks to the generosity of the Gordon Fraser Charitable Trust. It will run for three years alongside the existing June Baker Trust Conservation Awards scheme, with the first awards of up to £1,000 per applicant being made in May 2015.

The Scottish Emerging Conservators Grants Scheme will give grants to support conservators who are between 6 months and 3 years of qualifying and in the process of gaining their early workplace experience to fund learning and development plan of their own choosing. Applications are invited from new conservators who are gaining practical experience in Scottish conservation workplaces, or, if gaining their work experience elsewhere can otherwise demonstrate a strong Scottish connection and commitment to conservation in Scotland.

Application forms and Guidance for Applicants 


More News
Public Restoration and New Discovery: Constable's The Mill Stream

On Thursday 3rd December, BBC Look East broadcast a feature about Icon member Rosalind Whitehouse and her conservation of John Constable's The Mill Stream (1814). Whitehouse was asked to clean and restore the painting in view of the public – exactly 200 years since it was painted.

This was done at Christchurch Mansion Museum, Ipswich, where the collection of Constable paintings is housed - right on the edge of Constable Country. Whitehouse explains, "I worked there three days a week in a room with the door open and a viewing bay, with informed volunteers manning the door. They were great. There was a daily Palace Bulletin by the door, alerting the public to the plan for the day, and images of what had been done the day before, as well as a general FAQ information board. At 12.30 each day I was available for questions."

The whole process has been filmed and will go on a loop when Constable's Salisbury Cathedral painting visits Ipswich next year, and there will be a lot of Constable publicity in the area. A longer version will be made too for various purposes. According to Whitehouse, a delightful finding was a tiny kingfisher swooping over the water in the shadows of the painting, that nobody seems to have noticed before. X rays, paint sampling and close investigation gave detailed information on the process of the artist’s work, the results of which could be aligned with the great amount of published work on other works by Constable previously completed by Sarah Cove. 

The Telegraph also covered the story - read the article here.

Musée d'Orsay announces campaign to restore Gustave Courbet's 'The Painter's Studio'

As reported by artdaily:

Acquired by the State through public subscription in 1920, the painting The Painter's Studio (1854-1855) by Gustave Courbet is a universal masterpiece that is part of France's cultural heritage.

After surviving more than a century of turbulent history, this 22 m² canvas is now in need of restoration. As this treasure belongs to everyone in France, the Musée d'Orsay is once again calling on the generosity of the public to help finance its restoration and to enable as many people as possible to participate in this project, beyond the traditional patrons.

Read more about this project at

Marsh Award for Excellence in the Conservation of a Public Sculpture or Fountain

A new Award, run in partnership with the Public Monuments & Sculpture Association (PMSA), has been awarded to Rupert Harris Conservation for their conservation work on the Prince Consort Statue. Proprietor/Head Conservator Rupert Harris is an Accredited Member of Icon. The equestrian statue of the Prince Consort was for many years blighted by its location at the centre of the Holborn Circus roundabou where it suffered from poor maintenance.

The award recognises an individual or group responsible for the restoration of a public sculpture for the benefit of the wider public. The PMSA aims to heighten public appreciation of Britain's public sculpture, and to contribute to its preservation, protection and promotion.

Read more about the award

Icon Member West Dean College Becomes New Training Partner for British Library

Icon Member West Dean College has signed an exciting agreement to collaborate on a programme of training with the British Library, delivering a portfolio of short courses into aspects of preservation and collection care for libraries.

The programme focuses on Continued Professional Development and is aimed at professionals, conservation students and others interested in furthering their skills. The jointly-branded courses will be delivered at West Dean College and the British Library.

Further information can be found on the West Dean website

Icon Launches Conservation Awards 2015

On 21st October, heritage sector leaders, press, conservators and Icon staff gathered at the Cutty Sark to launch the 2015 Conservation Awards.

"These Awards celebrate excellence in the conservation of our cultural and industrial heritage", said Alison Richmond, Icon CEO, adding that attention this year will focus on raising the profile of the awards among the wider public. "We want to inspire people to apply, and to inspire people to get involved in conservation projects in their own communities."

The awards are sponsored by Beko plc, and a family of partners including The Pilgrim Trust, the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) and the Anna Plowden Trust. Beko and the IMechE will also be funding two new awards this year that recognise the power of volunteers, and the exchange of knowledge between volunteers and professional conservators.

For more information, visit the Awards website.

Spread the word #conservationawards

The William Morris Craft Fellowship

Since 1986 The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) has offered a Fellowship programme designed to broaden the skills and experience of craftspeople, from any trade, who are employed in the repair of historic buildings. Each year the Fellows spend six months travelling the length of the country together, making site visits and meeting expert craftspeople, contractors and architects working in building conservation.

This unique scheme is supported by the William Morris Craft Fellowship Trust. The programme welcomes applications from craftspeople employed in the repair of historic buildings on site or in workshops and studios.

Visit the SPAB website to find out more

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