Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral has been awarded a £138,000 grant from the Getty Foundation to fund conservation and repair works to the grade-2 listed building.
Architects Purcell are leading the project, which will include a programme of research and conservation for the ‘crown of glass’, the cathedral’s distinctive lantern.
The lantern’s design used a mix of stained glass fragments supported by epoxy resin, known as ‘dalle de verre’. It was created by artists John Piper and Patrick Reyntiens, who also collaborated on the new Coventry Cathedral.
To preserve as much existing material as is technically possible, the project team has undertaken extensive analysis and testing to understand the condition and stability of the glass and resin. The next steps will be to introduce environmental and water monitoring systems, upgrade all of the maintenance access locations to facilitate internal inspections and to prepare sample panels for laboratory testing. Purcell’s heritage experts have produced a conservation statement for the funding application and are planning to produce a conservation management plan for the whole site.
Lead architect at Purcell, Matt Dyer, commented: “The Getty Foundation is such a renowned organisation and to be awarded this grant as part of their ‘Keeping it Modern’ scheme is an honour. Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral is an exemplar building demonstrating innovative and unique 20th century architecture, and the preservation of the building and the lantern is of the highest importance. I look forward to implementing the money from the grant to ensure that future generations will be able to enjoy and appreciate the building as we do.”
The Getty Foundation provides strategic grant initiatives to individuals and institutions across the world to advance the greater understanding and preservation of the visual arts.
The programme of investigation and testing at the cathedral will commence shortly, with trial repairs to be undertaken in the next 12 months.