Longford Academy Spring Workshop 2016

Longford Academy – Spring Workshop, August 2016

With TBCITB support this year, APT Australasia Chapter expanded the number and the skills level of Longford Academy offerings at the Woolmers Estate.   The week of 22–26 August 2016 saw the first master class on wood carpentry and joinery conservation presented by leading heritage conservation contractor Gary Waller.  A refresher program for past Longford Academy participants ran in parallel with the master class.

Gary Waller brought a team of four of his assistants from Sydney to Woolmers Estate to demonstrate methods of conserving heritage fabric by means of consolidation and minimal intervention, all in accordance with the Burra Charter principle of doing as much as necessary and as little as possible. Gary also presented a one-day workshop on Friday 26 August in which he described a range of woodworking and conservation techniques that his company practices. Ten additional practitioners from Tasmania and the mainland came to Longford and joined the group for this valuable workshop.

With so much high-value heritage fabric at Woolmers needing an experienced heritage conservation practitioner’s light touch, every effort will be made to offer more workshops and master classes to develop the skills and resources needed in the years ahead while also contributing to the conservation of this precious heritage resource.


Gary Waller with workshop participants discussing repairs to a woolshed shutter

A key component of the work of the Longford Spring Session was the careful planning and execution of repairs to the wooden shutters from the Woolmers woolshed. These date from 1820, and were in dire need of repair to ensure their conservation. Gary and his team carefully planned the work and demonstrated techniques to participants who also directly assisted with the repairs.


Michael Bremer-Trainor building up the oak grained finish on the Australian red cedar front door using traditional wood graining materials and methods

In addition, the front door of Woolmers Homestead was repainted and oak grained during the wood master class by specialist decorative painter Michael Bremer-Trainor from Huonville, Tasmania. The full process can be viewed in this powerpoint presentation prepared by Anthony Mitchell.

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