SOAS University of London

Portland stone restoration work begins at Senate House North Block

23 April 2015

As construction work moves into the restoration phase at Senate House North Block, the historical Portland stone in the Grade II listed building's courtyard façade will undergo a steam clean to bring it back to its former glory.

Portland stone is a limestone from the Tithonian stage of the Jurassic period quarried on the Isle of Portland, Dorset. It is an off-white building material known for its durability but, over time, naturally darkens in colour as a result of pollution and dirt.

To prepare for the façade cleaning, access cradles have been installed on the roof and windows were covered with plastic sheets to reduce the chance of damage. This careful operation will take four months in total to complete.

Take a look inside the building and keep up-to-date with developments and images of ongoing construction and restoration work by visiting SOAS into Senate House. 

20150423 Facade cleaning 1 SHNB
The plastic sheets fitted to windows will reduce the chance of damage
20150423 Facade cleaning 2 SHNB
Cradles installed in the courtyard