Clerk of the Works' Blog: September 2014 | Salisbury Cathedral

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Clerk of the Works' Blog: September 2014

Posted By : Gary Price Friday 29th August 2014

It’s feeling a bit autumnal now and in keeping with the start of the end of another year, a few other things have also finished. Our peregrines fledged and, as with all offspring, the only thing left to do was to clean up after them. I spent two hours with the RSPB cleaning all four sides of the tower, which was repaid by our Head Tower Guide sending a lovely ‘thank you’ e-mail after one of his Saturday tours.

Also the stone carving courses for this year are all done - the positive feedback received throughout the three two-day sessions was  very useful and we’ve gained a lot of tips that will enable us to give an even better experience when we run them again next summer. They will be advertised in Cathedral News and on the website so if you missed out this time do please keep an eye out next year.

There are also still many things to look forward to, for instance if you didn’t get onto one of our carving courses and still fancy having a go at stone masonry, I and some of my team will be attending the Heritage and Craft Fayre that will be held here on the west lawn over the weekend of the 6th and 7th of September.  Our glaziers are also going to be with us so that will be another interesting demonstration. Along with all the stalls there will be other events, one of which will be me giving a talk on the experiences of a year in the life of being the Clerk of the Works. I’ll be doing that at midday both days and it would be lovely if you were able to come along and perhaps give me the nod afterwards if you’re a regular reader of my blogs. The setting up of the Fayre is going to be photographed with a time lapse camera so there will be footage of us all resembling ants and making all the stalls etc appear as if by magic.

If you’re not able to come along you might catch a glimpse of me at another time, again from a distance (like in this month’s picture that shows me helping to install the time lapse camera), as I go aloft to change the warning lights on top of the spire. One of them has failed and although they have a life expectancy of 2½ years, they have currently been in place for four so it seems sensible to change them all.

If you live locally and see some people ‘hanging around’ the tower, do not be alarmed, our rope access conservators will be undertaking a survey of the work our masons did about 20 years ago and looking for any remedial work that might have become necessary; they are the chaps that will also be accompanying me to change the warning lights.

If you’re wondering who my leading lady is for this month’s blog, it’s the Cathedral and so the Blessed Virgin Mary, and that’s pretty hard for anyone to beat.