Conservation Stations at HOD: Live conservation cleaning at St Mary’s church Ripple, Worcestershire

Icon member Kate Andrew ACR will be running a Conservation Station during Heritage Open Days

24 Aug 2023

Icon is working with Heritage Open Days to raise awareness of the work of conservators, particularly through matching local sites with experts.

Conservation Stations are being set up across the country for Heritage Open Days, where the public will be able to learn about the important work conservators do.



Conservation Station at St Mary’s Church Ripple

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Parish Church of Ripple, Station Road, Ripple, Worcester, Worcestershire, GL20 6EY

Sunday 17 September: Event running 1000-1600. Tours at 1100, 1200, 1300 & 1400, refreshments served 1100-1500

On Sunday 17th September, local volunteers will be working with Icon member Kate Andrew ACR to clean the sixteen 15th century miserichords that show the work needed in medieval times to manage the farming year.

The exhibition about the history of the church and the Civil War Battle of Ripple will be on display together with the tapestry kneelers created at the time of the millennium by the local community.

Find out more and book here.


The chancel at St Mary’s Church Ripple, Worcestershire contains a very fine set of carved medieval misericords (lift up seats to help clergy and choristers to stand for long periods during church services). The amazing three dimensional carvings under the little seats tell the story of the medieval farming year. The scenes are regularly featured on Twitter by church enthusiasts.  

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During lockdown, the church got very damp, resulting in a dulled bloom developing on the wax polish, and spiders were also busy. Several years of dust accumulation now mean that they are not looking their best. 

On Sunday 17th September as part of Heritage Open Days, Icon member Kate Andrew ACR, one of the Diocesan Church Building Team, will be working with volunteers from the local community to undertake a basic conservation clean of the misericords to remove dust and surface dirt. Come and see work in progress and chat about the techniques being used, maybe even learn how to roll a cotton wool swab.   

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Kate’s original discipline was as a geological and natural sciences conservator with an in-depth understanding of care of collections. 

In the last six years of working for the Diocese of Worcester as one of the Church Buildings Team, advising parishes on the care of historic items in churches has become her main area of work.  The Ripple misericords however are unique within the Diocese. Kate led a day of training for the church volunteers earlier this year in the basic conservation cleaning techniques that will be used on the day.  

There are lots to see and enjoy at this impressive church - guided tours on the hour, a green dragon quiz for children (and adults) and refreshments served 11.00 to 15.00.  


Meet Kate during Heritage Open Days at St Mary’s Church Ripple.

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