To mark the tenth anniversary of its re-opening Kiplin Hall near Richmond is honouring its team of volunteers.
A party to mark the decade since its restoration is being held next Saturday, June 18 and will feature a special presentation to the 20 volunteers who have been tending to the hall and garden since it re-opened the doors.
The hall closed in 1998 for three years of major restoration work opening again in May 2001 under the care and management of curator, Dawn Webster, with a staff of one, Elaine Bird, now warden at the house. In 2002 a meeting was held to form a Friends’ group to support the continuing conservation and advancement of Kiplin Hall and a dedicated team of volunteers has worked there ever since.
The volunteer roll call has now grown to 85 and the hall has continued to develop becoming an accredited museum.
Friends’ membership numbers have more than doubled since the inaugural meeting and now stand at nearly 300. Over the years, the Friends have made major contributions to the cost of conservation work on paintings and furniture, restoration work in the historic gardens and fitting out the kitchen for the Tea Room.
This year they have funded the cleaning and conservation of a 17th century oil painting, An Italian Palace through a Colonnade, which hangs in the ground floor Drawing Room.
The Friends of Kiplin Hall have also paid for the new Sensory Garden, which has been designed and created by Head Gardener, Chris Baker.
Saturday will also see it’s official opening by Joyce Johnson, Chairwoman of the Friends of Kiplin Hall.