The Mansfield Traquair Centre (Edinburgh) – Phoebe Anna Traquair murals scheme
The Mansfield Traquair Centre is a former Catholic Apostolic Church which was designed by Sir Robert Rowand Anderson and completed in 1885. The outstanding feature is the scheme of mural decoration painted by Phoebe Anna Traquair in the 1890s. The building is open to the public when not in use for functions.
In the spring of 2018, The Mansfield Traquair Trust commissioned Scottish Wall Paintings Conservators (SWPC) to carry out a quinquennial condition survey of the Phoebe Traquair murals scheme. The survey discovered that urgent conservation treatment was required to consolidate vulnerable, actively flaking paint in a number of locations around the building. It also highlighted maintenance issues on the roof that had been caused by a run of extreme storms.
Following minor repairs to the roof of the building, conservation treatment of the murals was carried out in early 2019.
Crumbling plaster and small plaster losses along the edges of historic cracks were consolidated and filled.
Patches of actively flaking paint and blind detachment were re-adhered, and small paint losses were reintegrated.
Finally, the murals were cleaned to remove a layer of surface soiling that had accumulated as a result of the busy events schedule in the building.
A team of three conservators carried out treatment – Karen Dundas (wallpaintings conservator and project leader), Shannon Miller (paintings conservator) and Cristina Beretta (wallpaintings conservator)