One of four beds at Knole, the James II Bed is probably one of the most important pieces of Stuart furniture in existence to have survived. For many years the bed has been in an extremely fragile condition, a result of early conservation work carried out by the Rural Industries Bureau in the 1960s and exposure to the agents of deterioration (light, dust, high relative humidity).
Since 2006 visitors have viewed the bed in a de-constructed state as most of its components were removed to the National Trust textile studio where the team have been thousands of painstaking hours cleaning the textiles and piecing back together tiny fragments.
Last month Ksynia (NT textile advisor) and Aimee from the textile studio and John from Tankerdale (NT furniture advisor) came to remove the last of the upper valances (the inner four).
Once conservation has been finished on the valances the last big piece of the bed, the Tester will be next for treatment.
The National Trust Images website has lots of photographs of when most of the bed was dismantled in 2006.
Lucy, Melinda, Emily and Sarah