6:30am Wednesday 15th January 2014
antique furniture at a Cotswold manor was saved in the nick of time when flooding struck the Grade I listed building.
Kelmscott Manor, in the Cotswolds, dates from the late 16th century and was the home of writer and designer William Morris from 1871 to 1896.
But the Manor is situated next to the River Thames and has a history of flood damage. In the floods of July 2007 some flooring had to be replaced.
Water levels had also risen over the Christmas period and things took a turn for the worst last Monday.
Kelmscott Manor administrator Sarah Parker said: “It was a worrying time. The river burst its banks and the water table was rising and we all remembered what happened in 2007.
“It was getting to the stage where we were like an island and you had to wade through water to get here.”
When water started creeping into the cellar, Crown Fine Art – a company that transports, installs and preserves works of art and museum pieces – was called in to rescue some of the rare pieces.
This included a design called Red House by Philip Webb, which had to be dismantled before it could be carried upstairs.
Michael Festenstein, of Crown Fine Art, said: “It was important to get them onto wooden blocks or move them to a higher floor as soon as possible. We were delighted to play a part in conserving these pieces for the future.”
Kelmscott Manor re-opens to the public on April 2.
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