While you’ve all been wrapping up your Christmas presents, we’ve been wrapping up our garden statues. We all love a white and frosty Christmas, our statues however, are not so keen, so efforts are made to keep them cosy during the chilly months of winter!
This year we have some brand new covers on no less than 28 of our statues at Polesden. Employing a new technique of covering this year, these statues at Polesden are ready and waiting for winter in their new, close-wrapped winter jackets, rather than being ‘put to bed’ in their old, sleeping bag covers……
There are all sorts of different winter covers that can be used, and have been used for years by the National Trust, for garden statuary. Framed or tented structures, sleeping bag-style covers and closely wrapped covers; are all ways in which we can wrap up our statues and protect them from the changing weather conditions of our great British
So, in preparation for the first frost in late autumn, we make sure to get some winter covers on to avoid the damage that frost cycles can do to our statues.
A frost cycle, is essentially the process of water freezing and unfreezing in quick succession, and therefore expanding and contracting at the same rate. If this water gets into the cracks or weak points of the statue, it can rapidly expand and contract when it freezes, causing more damage both internally and externally.
The other main aim of wrapping up your statues is to maintain a stable relative humidity and temperature within the cover, as sharp changes in either of these environmental conditions will also cause damage.
So to avoid all of these potential problems, we have wrapped up our statues in a waterproof, but water vapour permeable material, which is also flexible enough to be wrapped closely to the form of each statue. It’s important to allow the water vapour to escape (but keep precipitation out) so the statues don’t start to ‘sweat’ (a strange thought for an English winter!)
The absolutely brilliant thing about closely wrapped statues, is that during the winter months when the gardens at Polesden are still open for you all to enjoy, you are still able to see the statues too! Gone are the days when statues were hidden from view during the ever diminishing ‘closed season’. No, you can all guess what the statues are under their
wrapping – good practice for guessing what your presents are under the tree this Christmas!