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Victorian museum's glass roof is painstakingly restored

The first of three projects to repair and restore 8,500 glass panes on the Victorian iron and glass roof of the Oxford University Museum of Natural History — which is historically prone to leakage — has begun.

Contractor Beard Oxford said it is “midway through” the first phase of the four month project. The project — covering the restoration of the first of three roof sections — will complete at the end of February with subsequent restoration projects on the remaining two sections planned over the next two years.

Three glass roof sections span the museum’s main exhibition court and are made up of 8,500 diamond shaped glass panes. Each pane will be removed and cleaned and any damage will be repaired before each one is replaced with compressible seals, to prevent the leaks that have previously plagued the museum. The ironwork is also being cleaned.

Beard Oxford has constructed a fully waterproof scaffold deck below the working areas to keep rain, dust and dirt out of the exhibition court. The museum aims to remain open during the project.

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