Restoration efforts given a trial run

Window repointing at Lindisfarne Castle
Window repointing at Lindisfarne Castle
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Remedial building works taking place at Lindisfarne Castle over the winter are making good progress.

Trials are being carried out to look at ways of solving severe problems caused by the castle’s exposure to wet and windy weather.

Experts in stone and plaster, environmental deterioration, historic windows and engineering, along with conservation architects and archaeologists, have been involved.

It is planned to combine the successful trials into a £1.2million restoration project scheduled for 2017.

Nick Lewis, house steward, said: “The two main trial walls have had their cement pointing hacked out, new lime pointing packed in and breathable render applied to give a protective cover.

“Internally, old rust iron lintels have been removed from above three windows and new galvanised steel beams have been installed.

Lintels in the West Bedroom have also been removed.

“They were three metres long and extraordinarily heavy,” said Nick. “So much so it took six men to lift each one out.”

The other internal job is chipping off a cement render that had been applied to the walls of the West Bedroom and Upper Gallery, presumably as a water-proofing.

Elsewhere on Holy Island, St Mary’s Parish Church requires repairs estimated at £145,000, for which the PCC is seeking donations and grants.

A structural survey has revealed much of the stonework has been pointed using a concrete mix which has resulted in erosion, most obvious on the West Front. The pointing needs to be chased out and replaced with a lime mortar.

Work will be undertaken on the West Front, around the St Peter’s window, the porch and other areas of erosion.