The Stoke Orchard Wall Paintings Conservation Project Team is looking to recruit!

A major project supported by grants from the Gloucestershire Historic Churches Trust is looking to recruit a Graduate Conservation Assistant and a Student Conservation Intern.

The Perry Lithgow Partnership have been appointed to carry out conservation treatment to the wall paintings at the Church of St James the Great, Stoke Orchard, Gloucestershire. The project is due to start in mid-August 2020. The Tredington & Stoke Orchard PCC and the Perry Lithgow Partnership, supported by the Institute of Conservation (Icon) and Gloucester Diocesan Advisory Committee (DAC) are looking to recruit two junior members of the project’s conservation team.

1. Graduate Conservation Assistant: A graduate of a recognised conservation course (an ‘emerging conservator’), with proven experience of practical wall paintings conservation. The appointment will be for a period of 8 weeks (40 working days) of the project’s expected 10 weeks. Eligible candidates should have graduated with their conservation degree less than two years prior to the project’s start date. The daily rate of £128.00 (or £16 per hour, assuming a max 8-hour day) is offered, as well as reasonable travel and accommodation expenses, plus a small living allowance/subsistence. Full driving licence and access to a car are required.

2. Student Conservation Intern: A current student, enrolled on a recognised conservation course, for a period of two weeks (10 working days). The successful candidate will receive a stipend of £30/day. In addition, we would pay reasonable travel and accommodation expenses, plus a small living allowance/subsistence. Full driving licence and access to a car are preferable, but alternative arrangements may be possible.

Successful candidates will benefit from supervision of a nationally renowned conservation team of the Perry Lithgow Partnership. They will learn new skills and acquire practical conservation experience in a grade I listed rural church, thought to have some of the most important collections of fragmentary wall paintings dating to different periods, in the country. Furthermore, the successful candidates will have an opportunity to learn about the roles Parochial Church Councils (PCCs) and Diocesan Advisory Committees (DACs) play in the efforts to safeguard and conserve ecclesiastical heritage of historic Anglican places of worship. They will also have a chance to learn about the role of the Institute of Conservation, its advocacy on behalf of the conservation sector and the benefits of Icon’s membership, and accreditation. The Project will cover Icon membership for the current year for both junior team members. They will be encouraged to write up their learning experiences for Icon News.

St James the Great, Stoke Orchard is a charming grade I listed building of Norman origin, renowned for its significant wall paintings. Five to seven different fragmentary schemes survive, with the earliest dated C13/C14 and the latest painted in 1723. Perhaps the most significant of them are the scenes from the Life of St James the Great; the most complete survival of this subject matter in the country and one of the most complete in Europe. The paintings were uncovered and consolidated in 1952-56 by Clive Rouse, Audrey Baker and others. The current conservation project constitutes Phase 1 of a holistic vision to improve the building’s condition as a place of worship and heritage asset, while ensuring that its significance is fully understood, appreciated, interpreted and protected; for the use and enjoyment of today’s congregation and visitors, and for the benefit of future generations.

Prospective candidates are asked to e-mail their CV and a short, one-page cover letter explaining why they should be considered for one of the above opportunities and describing their relevant interests and practical experience. They should also elaborate on what they hope to achieve through this experience. Candidates must have the right to live and work in the UK. The deadline is 5 July 2020
In order to apply, or if you have any questions, please e-mail Adam Klups, Gloucester Diocesan Advisory Committee Secretary:
Shortlisted candidates may be asked to take part in a Zoom interview. Date tbc.