Georgian and Regency Conservatories


    History, design and conservation
        Paperback / softback

        Publication Date

        1 May 2019

        Main Summary

          Conservatories emerged in the early 19th century as a result of an increased interest in horticulture as well as developments in glass and iron manufacture, and in methods of heating. These technical innovations led to a new type of glasshouse with greater levels of light and more efficiently regulated heat, rendering them more equipped to house permanent displays of plants and flowers. Conservatories thus became a more agreeable place in which to spend time and so they began to be attached to the house in order to be used as a social space. Drawing on contemporary architects’ plans, horticultural publications, diaries and memoirs, this book shows how and why conservatories emerged in the form they did, and explores what they were like inside and how they were used by their owners. The second part of the book focuses on how various elements of conservatories may be conserved. This section examines the ways in which the materials and components of these often forgotten, but nonetheless architecturally and culturally significant structures, have deteriorated, as well as the various methods and approaches used in their conservation. Divided into five sections, specific case studies highlight practical approaches to the conservation and repair of metalwork, glazing, woodwork and surface coatings, as well as the importance of recording and storage. This study will offer practical guidance for practitioners, architects, owners, and those involved in the heritage industry.

          Additional Information


          Melissa Thompson
          Michael Borozdin-Bidnell

          Author Information

          Melissa Thompson has been a Listing Adviser for Historic England since 2010, having previously worked in historic buildings research.
          Michael Borozdin-Bidnell was formerly Head of Research and Information at the Georgian Group and is now an independent consultant.

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            Part 1- The emergence of the conservatory
            The origins of the conservatory
            The emergence of the conservatory
            The integration of the conservatory within the house
            The appropriate location for conservatories
            Design - Advice and manufacturers
            Environmental conditions
            The benefits of ‘indoor gardening’
            Part 2- Subsequent developments to conservatories
            and glasshouses and conservation approaches
            Iron and metalwork - Glass
            Woodwork - Surface coatings
            New conservatories