Rule Britannia!

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Conservator working on a sculpture

Something I love about popping into the sculpture conservation studio at the National Conservation Centre is you get to see all sorts of monuments and sculptures up close and from angles that wouldn't normally be possible. Earlier this year I got to look up Queen Victoria's skirt (probably not something I should admit to - I'll be sent to the Tower). Yesterday I got to see the Britannia sculpture from the war memorial at Crewe and Nantwich from above, which only the birds get to do usually. The sculpture is currently being cleaned by conservator Marisa Prandelli.

The public don't usually get to go behind the scenes like this. However, conservators will be holding special tours of their studios in a series of open days on 5 October, 8 November and 5 December 2006. Places are free but numbers are limited so please book in advance by ringing 0151 478 4999. For more details please see the What's On pages.

Close up of the Britannia sculptureUp close you can see the horses decorating the Britannia sculpture's helmet