By Pictures by Wednesday 07 November 2012 Updated: 06/12 08:59
AN HISTORIC Stratford landmark has been given a new lease of life.
Conservators have just completed a clean up of the Clopton Chapel in Trinity Church and the result is quite stunning as John Cheal's photographs show.
Claudia Fiocchetti and James White spent a month - armed with tap water, hog's head brushes, a steam machine and a vacuum cleaner - working on the chapel which is home to the tomb of great town benefactor Hugh Clopton, who funded the building of the Clopton Bridge.
Parish assistant and retired history teacher Madeleine Hammond took a great interest in the work.
She said: "The conservators have made a marvellous job of removing centuries of dirt and dust that has accumulated on the Clopton Chapel monuments.
"I think the majority of us were surprised at the glorious colours that emerged as they carried out their work.
"Suffice to say that not only has the work done by Claudia and James revealed much of the original colour and texture of the tombs, but it has also preserved them from further corrosion.
Hugh Clopton built his own tomb in the 1490s, but he died in London and was buried there, so his tomb actually remains empty.
Other members of the Clopton clan are however buried in the chapel, including Joyce and her husband Thomas Carew, whose tomb is regarded as one of the finest Renaissance monuments in Europe.
It is thought the chapel was last given a clean in the 1960s, but nothing like as throughly as the recent clean.
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