Sizergh Castle National Trust

(Photos Mel Winstanley: click on images to enlarge)

Between 2007 and 2012 Lunesdale Decorative and Fine Arts Society’s Heritage Volunteers completed a variety of projects at Sizergh Castle, a National Trust property outside Kendal.  Our initial projects included dusting a small corridor of books which forms part of the visitor experience and making vestment covers and padded hangers for the 18th and 19th century vestments in time for Sizergh’s first Heritage Open Day in September 2008.  Smaller projects in 2009 included making a chaise longue cover and altering new covers on 18th century chairs to avoid abrasion of the original fabric when completing a conditions report. 



Measuring Melinex
Finished Melinex Cover
In 2010 a team of LDFAS Volunteers made replica Elizabethan embroidered, fine linen smocks for an exhibition in the Inlaid Chamber – the jewel in Sizergh’s crown.  We also made rough linen smocks for children to dress-up in and hessian ‘feelie’ bags for visitors to guess what type of filling might be in the mattress on the truckle bed which had been made by local craftsmen for the exhibition.  As part of this we collected beech leaves for one of the bags!
  Cutting the thread   Tudor Costume1  
Tudor Costume 2
Picking the Beech Leaves
From January 2011 we worked with National Trust Volunteers to make Tudor servants’ costumes, high and low status children’s costumes, and some handkerchiefs.  During the castle's 'Tudor weeks' in August 2011 and August 2012 the costumes were worn by National Trust volunteers and staff as part of the washing demonstrations (using the handkerchiefs) visitors’ children also enjoyed dressing up  in the costumes. 
Tudor Smock
Tudor demonstration
Group of Volunteers
Group of Volunteers2
Blue costume
Yellow costume