Daniel and Caroline Pitt visited Holywell Glass in Wells on 4 October to see progress on the refurbishment of the South Transept Window from Christ Church. ( see article here) Holywell Glass occupy a medieval mill in the City of Wells – the mill stream still rushes past the window. We met four delightful people who obviously enjoy their work.
Two of the Christ Church panes were being worked on during our visit. All procedures are carefully photographed. Before disassembly, a rubbing is taken that the glass then rests on as it is carried round the workshop. The first process is to remove the lead which holds the pieces together – wearing gloves and masks as lead is poisonous; the old lead is sent away for recycling. Then the glass is placed on a light box and each piece of the pattern is carefully cleaned to remove 160 years of smoke from coal fires and candles, dust and condensation. One person will take most of a week to clean all the pieces in each of our four lights. Then any glass pieces that are broken will be repaired with either epoxy resin, copper strips or new lead.
Eventually the panes will be reassembled and releaded and then returned to the church to be reinstalled in the window. We hope that this process will be finished in good time for Christmas. Caroline & Daniel Pitt