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The Banqueting House, Whitehall - SSH Conservation

The Banqueting House is a survivor of the opulent architectural genre of banqueting house, and the only remaining component of the original Palace of Whitehall in London. Designed by Inigo Jones in a style influenced by Andrea Palladio, the Banqueting House was completed in 1622. 

Today, the Banqueting House is a national monument, open to the public who can marvel at its lavish proportions and magnificent painted ceilings.

The Problem

The scope of the works carried out by Sally Strachey Historic Conservation to the Banqueting House in the heart of Whitehall included the sensitive cleaning of all elevations, stone repair and stone replacement to the ashlar and decorative detail and stone carving.

The Solution

Restorative Techniques conducted cleaning trials on site and were very prompt in resolving any ensuing issues, including the prompt supply of alternative equipment and a split hose attachment (allowing two lances to be used at one time).

The site was well served with good access arrangements, though working in the heart of London always poses its own unique challenges. One area in particular had quite a tight scaffolding arrangement, but Restorative Techniques were able to supply shorter lances for the ThermaTech®,  which made it possible to use the equipment on all areas.

As well as ThermaTech® machinery, pre-mixed ammonium carbonate poultices were used during the cleaning process. The ready mixed poultice was preferred due to the ease of application and its effectiveness in the removal of sulphation.

The Outcome

The client was very pleased with the results, and the ThermaTech® allowed SSH Conservation to meet the specific requirements of the architects in terms of retaining a degree of patina on the stonework. 

The cleaning was sensitive to the age and appearance of the building and was not aimed at achieving a complete clean.  The operators were able to achieve this due to the variability of the temperature and pressure that the ThermaTech® allows.  

  • Sally Strachey Historic Conservation working on stone at The Banqueting House (1)
  • Sally Strachey Historic Conservation working on stone at The Banqueting House (2)