The BAPRAS Grant of Arms - conservation work

3rd February 2023


The BAPS Grant of Arms document has recently undergone professional conservation treatment. The work was done by the National Conservation Service (NCS), who oversee the storage of many of our painted and framed works at their conservation grade storage facility.

The Articles of Association serve as a legal statement declaring how a company (or Association) will be governed. The document is agreed and signed by the trustees and President of BAPS (at the time, John Battle) and describes the formal Grant of Arms which was awarded by the College of Arms in 1955.
The document is extremely fragile, being hand painted and made of vellum.

A condition assessment was performed when The Collection moved into the new BAPRAS office at RCS. The document had been framed over 50 years ago, using materials which would not meet modern Heritage standards. It was found that the vellum was warping, some of painted elements and the signatures were fading.

For preservation, It was removed from the frame and cleaned using a goat’s hair brush. The old adhesives were painstakingly removed, thankfully they had not stained the material. The document was humidified in order to relax the vellum and placed in protective storage media. The seals, which were framed alongside the vellum parchment, had accumulated ingrained dirt and surface debris. These were cleaned using brushes and distilled water.

Owing to fragile nature of the material and the importance of the document to the Association, long term storage of the document was arranged at the NCS. There it can be kept in monitored and controlled environmental conditions.



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