IF you’re planning a spot of cleaning this week, you might want to spare a thought for the team at Lotherton Hall in Leeds.
With the Georgian country house closed for the winter, experts have set about the mammoth task of getting it spick and span, ready to welcome back visitors in March.
For a house that’s been home to some of the city’s most prominent families through the ages, including the Nevilles, de Hothams and the Gascoignes, that means more than just a quick vacuum.
The annual deep clean sees the covers thrown on as experts painstakingly polish the delicate vases, china and artwork on show.
The entire house is cleaned from the Medal Room to the library, and everything from the floors to the curtains are hoovered, scrubbed and buffed.
Visitors can still get a glimpse behind the scenes at the estate’s stunning country house while experts work to protect and conserve its many historic features and exhibits.
Tours take place daily throughout January and February at 11am and 2pm and can be booked at the welcome cabin on arrival to the estate.
Councillor Brian Selby, Leeds City Council’s lead member for museums and galleries, said: “Every year a great deal of work goes into the cleaning and conservation of the beautiful and historic house at Lotherton Hall.
“While that work takes place, we’re keen that visitors still get the chance to have a look round a place which is so steeped in the city’s heritage.
“These tours offer a rare opportunity to not only look around the house, but to see some of the painstaking work that goes into keeping it so stunning all year round.”