The Georgian Group Architectural Awards 2021
The Georgian Group Architectural Awards for 2021 have recently been announced and Wheathills are very proud to have been involved with the Conservation and Restoration of two of the property winners, both in the country house and urban setting categories.
The Buxton Crescent Hotel and Spa
The Buxton Crescent Hotel and Spa were winners of the Restoration of a Georgian Building in an Urban Setting, the hotel opened 17 years after work first began. Wheathills were brought in to conserve the original Georgian mahogany doors within this C18th Grade 1 property, which were badly damaged by water ingress over many years.
The work here took Wheathills conservators from conservation to artistry in many areas. Water ingress had caused the veneers to lift and discolour on each door panel. Mineral stains from the plaster ran top to bottom, and splashes peppered the surfaces. Moulding had popped off through expansion and saturation.
The original components and finishes were all intact, even if some had the original grain filler exposed and washout. Steadily and gently, each surface was cleaned, removing the years of residue and grime that clung to the polish. Each piece of loose veneer was secure, mouldings refitted and holes stopped up with timber.
The stains were slowly coloured out and skinned in with shellac until the surface of the damaged areas blended in with the surrounding shades and the whole area could be burnished with an oil and beeswax composition, returning the original finish to a pleasant, subtle cared for patination.
Radbourne Hall were winners of the Restoration of a Georgian Country House. Wheathills spent many months conserving and restoring the panelled walls, doors, hallway, back stair handrails, main stairs, floors, gilt bedroom and the back staircase.
The conservation of this Grade1 interior had to adopt minimum intervention wherever possible to conserve the unique and fine patination throughout the building that had evolved over generations of private use as a family home. The original Colefax and Fowler paintwork and composition wood finishes are the foundation to the incredible finish of this house.
A Cuban mahogany staircase was cleaned and revived, all oak floors consolidated and burnished.
Architraves and hall panelling finely scumbled to resemble the finest quarter cut oak. The dining room floor to ceiling oak panelling was almost all but a few elements dismantled and reassembled, repairing the splits and shrinkage along the way. Its wonderful blond appearance and silky smooth texture was conserved to the extent that no evidence of such invasive yet necessary intervention was evident.