Posted: June 03rd 2021
by Paul Edmunds - Hall Volunteer
We’re celebrating Volunteer’s Week here at Holkham, giving thanks to the amazing team that so generously give their time, skills and efforts to the preservation of the Hall’s treasures. We are delighted to introduce Paul, who gives us an insight into a day in the life of a Hall volunteer.
“The whirr of museum vacuums and our day starts, each volume being removed from the shelf, examined and condition assessed, then cleaned using a museum vacuum and badger hair brush.
Holkham has provided us with the training on how to handle and clean the books with care and confidence. Most often working at this in teams of two, we enjoy discussing the condition of some books and sharing the interesting marginalia we regularly come across. To some, we provide extra TLC, binding them with archival tape which is a fiddly job. Some fingers are more nimble than others.
A few need more attention and are wrapped in tissue paper. Those in most need are measured for archival boxes. But, it’s not just books as there are magazines laying on shelves neatly wrapped in tissue paper safe from being re-coated in dust. After months of work we can look at the shelves we have completed and the comparison with those still to do shows the difference we are making.
Holkham definitely makes volunteering an interesting, satisfying experience.”