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Lightning Protection

When lightning strikes are you protected against this act of God?

The issue of lightning protection in churches is one that has exercised this publication for many years. In this four-part series of spotlights on the issue we will be revisiting various aspects of the subject, beginning with an overview of current thinking.

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Traditional Lime

Lime: it’s better for buildings – and for the environment

It is now fairly well known that cement is not good for old buildings and that lime mortar should be used. But why? What are the advantages and what are the disadvantages? In order to begin to answer those questions it is necessary to understand the nature of traditional building, the process by which buildings used to be built, and how it differs from modern construction, the process by which we build today.

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CRE Events

CRE postpones Sandown show – but you can still take part at home

Despite the gradual easing of lockdown, it is still unlikely that large-scale indoor events will be permitted in the autumn. CRE National at Sandown Park, Esher, has therefore been postponed for 12 months – until 12-14 October 2021.

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Audio Visual

Audio visual equipment in church buildings

This guidance is issued by the Church Buildings Council under section 55(1)(d) of the Dioceses, Mission and Pastoral Measure 2007. As it is statutory guidance, it must be considered with great care. The standards of good practice set out in the guidance should not be departed from unless the departure is justified by reasons that are spelled out clearly, logically and convincingly.

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Stained Glass

A brief history of stained glass

The origins of the first stained glass windows are lost in history. The technique probably came from jewelry making, cloisonné and mosaics. Stained glass windows as we know them, seemed to arise when substantial church building began.

By the 10th century, depictions of Christ and biblical scenes were found in French and German churches and decorative designs found in England.

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Ecclesiastical & Heritage World Back Issues

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Church Lighting

Light up your place of worship

The design of a lighting scheme and the light fittings themselves can have a positive impact on the way your building looks as well as being functional.

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War Memorials

War Memorials Trust

War Memorials Trust works to protect and conserve war memorials in the UK. The charity provides free advice to anyone as well as running grant schemes to support repair and conservation projects. You can find a range of resources on the website http://www.warmemorials.org/ to help you engage with our unique war memorial heritage. The Trust is a charity so if you support our work please consider making a donation.

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UK Roofing Awards

UK Roofing Awards 2020 finalists announced

The finalists for this year's The UK Roofing Awards 2020 have been announced. The NFRC will be reopening nominations later in the year for projects completed during 2020 and additional shortlisted projects will be added to create the full list of finalists for the combined 2020/21 awards event.

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Live Streaming

Why live stream is now mainstream

The restrictions around the COVID-19 pandemic have led to many churches venturing into the online world in a much more comprehensive way than before. While most churches have had some kind of online presence and the Church of England has it’s a Church Near You site, the live streaming of services has become much more common. And modern AV equipment is perfectly suited to communicating via the internet.

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Lead Contractors

Members offer 25 years peace of mind

The trade body that represents the leadworking industry – and guarantees quality in that industry – is the Lead Contractors’ Association (LCA). The LCA was formed in 1984 to promote quality standards in leadwork and now comprises over 70 specialist contractors committed, supported by 15 associate members who supply materials and ancillary services.

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Decorative Leadwork

Saving the artistry of early craftsmen

Beaten, twisted, cut or cast, ornate designs bear out the skill and artistry of early craftsmen. And surviving examples are under threat.

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Heritage Roofing

Heritage Roofing Register - a helping hand for architects

A unique register of heritage roofing specialists is providing much needed help and assurance for architects and specifiers when working on heritage projects. The Register is the brainchild of the UK’s largest roofing trade association, the National Federation of Roofing Contractors (NFRC).

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Lead Roofing

The benefits of lead roofing

Lead is one of the oldest materials in the roofing industry and is still commonly used throughout the world today.

Lead roofing is a traditional roofing method which has been used in the industry for hundreds of years, and is therefore proven to be extremely reliable. Lead roofing, and sand-cast lead, in particular is ideal for old buildings such as churches or historical renovations, whereas milled lead roofing is a mass-produced alternative, used for precision and accuracy in homes and commercial buildings alike.

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Lead Training

Training at the Lead Sheet Training Academy

The Lead Sheet Training Academy is at the forefront of training for those using lead or hard metals in the construction industry.

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The missing stained glass at the heart of our Victorian heritage has been replaced

0n8565The RHN is celebrating the restoration of its beautiful stained glass windows in its Victorian Assembly Room. The original windows, designed in the 1870s, were destroyed in bombing raids in the Second World War. After the war limited funds meant that the broken windows were replaced with plain glass. In recent years the windows and frames had become too fragile and were boarded up.

Using a single black-and-white archive image of the original windows, Chapel Studio worked with the Heritage of London Trust (who gave a start-up grant) to design new windows in keeping with the originals. The work cost £230k, which was raised in record time entirely through donations from generous individuals and organisations.

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Fine leadwork graces award-winning extension

For the new roof of a restaurant extension to the Grade One-listed Gravetye Manor in West Sussex, Matthew Marchant of M Marchant Specialist Lead Roofing Contractors Ltd used Code 6 lead throughout.

The roofing project was shortlisted in last year’s Murdoch Awards, while the new restaurant won a Mid Sussex Design Award – the commercial category of the 2019 Sussex Heritage Trust awards – and was a finalist in the 2019 SECBE Constructing Excellence Awards.

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When you can’t see the building for the trees!

The photographs in this article illustrate two ‘messages’ regarding the virtues of planting trees alongside heritage buildings. They are taken from a project recently carried out at York Minster by arboricultural and landscape consultants Barnes and Associates. It involved a tree survey, a health and safety assessment, an assessment of replanting opportunities and a management plan.

The photograph on the left demonstrates how the planting of small, out-of-proportion trees may distract from the magnificent structure of the Minster. They provide habitat, cooling and water retention – but are they the right trees in the right place?

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London calling for award-winning York Handmade Brick

0n8581The completion of the prestigious Lancer Square development in the heart of London marks a decade of York Handmade Brick’s involvement in reshaping the look of England’s capital city.

During the past 10 years York Handmade, one of the leading independent brickmakers in the UK, has provided the bricks for some of London’s most stunning new buildings.

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Complex roof tops off an extraordinary restoration

0n8594Athlone House is a brick and stone Victorian mansion built in 1871, lying on high ground just beyond the northern edge of Hampstead Heath, within the Highgate Conservation Area. Over its 150-year history the house has been used as a private dwelling, a secret RAF school during World War Two, and more recently an NHS home for people with dementia. From 2003, however, it had been left derelict.

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You don’t have to be tech savvy to use the latest in AV

0n8598Broadmead Baptist Church in Bristol is built on the foundations of one of the country’s earliest Baptist churches. Now, the completion of a dynamic audio-visual installation by Creative Audio-Visual Solutions has led to the church being fully equipped for all the requirements and challenges of worship in the 21st century.

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Roofing training centre reopens for business

0n8601At the end of June National Construction Training Services (NCTS) re-opened its training centre at Hoddesdon in Hertfordshire. The number of trainees attending each course is currently limited to a maximum of four in order to provide the recommended isolation distances. All candidates and tutors are being asked to wear the appropriate face masks during each training session and hand sanitiser is positioned around the training facility.

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York Minster revealed

0n8603The Morton Partnership were engineers for the refurbishment and enhancements to the Minster, including works to the Undercroft, Chapter House yard building and the approach to the South Transept and the repair of the Great East Window and East Front. In addition, further projects included assessment of the Aculn Library, fire damage at the Stoneyard and several other properties owned by the Dean and Chapter, as well as the setting up of a ‘watch survey’ for the Minster.

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Craftsman resurrects old glass for The New Room

John Wesley’s Chapel in Bristol – known as The New Room – opened its doors in 1739 and is the oldest Methodist building in the world. It has been a place of worship, heritage and social action ever since.

In 2017 a new visitor centre opened in the Horsefair courtyard next to it, featuring a café, shop, atrium, library and archive, meeting rooms and new offices – as well as a revamped 12-room museum above the existing chapel.

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No cash? No problem! The future of giving is in the app

Cash is losing relevance in society generally; and that presents both a problem and an opportunity for all churches: how can people give during the offering without it? That question led to the creation of Givt – an app designed for church and charity use to allow people to donate in all situations.

COVID-19 has changed the way people interact with the church and has revealed a flaw in the majority of cashless solutions. Givers want to give, not pay, and give regardless of where they are. What is needed is a solution like Givt, which utilises a smart phone app for all donations. It allows people to give while watching an online service, or while sitting in the church building, on their phone – instantly. That allows churches to keep the ‘giving moment’, even when we are all apart.

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ISCE rebrands to ISCVE – Institute of Sound, Communications & Visual Engineers

0n8617ISCE has renamed and rebranded to ISCVE Ltd - The Institute of Sound, Communications and Visual Engineers.

Recognising the diversity of our members and the markets they operate in, along with the convergence of technologies, the Institute has undertaken this identity and name change to embrace the wider scope, skills and sectors of its members and supporting members.

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Young people shun future visits to heritage attractions over coronavirus fears

0n8622Research commissioned by specialist heritage insurer, Ecclesiastical, has revealed young people are less likely to visit heritage attractions in person once the lockdown lifts due to coronavirus fears. However, digital is a revenue opportunity for heritage attractions as two fifths (44%) of young adults who visited a heritage attraction online during lockdown said they would be willing to pay to access these if they were no longer free.

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Lightning protection: the new standard explained

In May Historic England began a series of webinars aimed at providing technical guidance for owners and operators of historic buildings, as well as contractors and heritage professionals. Tagged as Technical Tuesdays, the webinars are presented by senior members of Historic England’s technical conservation team.

Each Tuesday in the week sees a webinar on a theme within a particular area of expertise. On 21 July the theme was Lightning Protection. It was presented by Historic England senior building services engineer Geraldine O’Farrell and the team leader of building services and principal engineer, Caroline Cattini.

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Renovation completed against the elements

0n8627Houghtons of York were appointed as main contractor for an interesting renovation project on the west coast of Scotland. Cul Na Shee, a Landmark Trust property is located in the small village of Saddell, Kintyre, about a 25 minute drive from Campbletown. The only access is through a narrow archway at Saddell Castle followed by a rough track, and finally a 60m walk along a picturesque gravel beach.

While this makes for a lovely approach to the property it made delivery of materials to site a rather tricky process, with large delivery trucks needing to be unloaded into a small van for the track before being carried by hand along the beach.

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Rinzaffo MGN – salt resistant lime scratch coat, available from Core Conservation

0n8650One of the unique products from Core Conservation is RINZAFFO MGN, a plaster developed in 1980 in Venice to tackle the problem of capillary rising damp, penetrating damp and salts - however its origins stretch back to ancient Roman times.

It is a breathable salt resistant lime scratch coat, which protects subsequent plaster layers from the destructive effect of salts. Because it is both waterproof and breathable in the same time, it is suitable for a number of specialist applications such as:

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Live Streaming now available from Creative Audio Visual Solutions

0n8656Live Streaming, especially during the Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic, is a vital means for churches to keep communicating to their congregation and the wider world.

Even when the lockdown is eased and churches open their doors again, many church regulars may still not be able to attend services. This is where a simple-to-use, reliable and high-quality online streaming system will allow your church to be ever present in these times when fellowship and togetherness are perhaps more important than ever. Creative Audio Visual Solutions (CAVS) offer a complete IT and networking solution for the modern office. Utilising the latest wired and wireless technologies, their systems are designed to increase your organisation's growth and productivity when storing information, printing and communicating with the outside world.

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Health and safety at your heritage property during the pandemic

The Government, in partnership with Historic England, has issued guidance for people who work or volunteer in heritage locations, to help them understand how to work safely and keep customers and visitors safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This guidance, which has been produced in consultation with English Heritage, the Church of England, and the Health and Safety Executive, among other contributors, provides a practical framework to help organisations continue, or restart, their operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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