Hog & Fitch

Hog & Fitch We provide a professional conservation cleaning and collections care service to museums, art galleries, historic houses, churches and private collectors.

Hog and Fitch are Angela Bell and Margaret Reid. Together we bring 35 years of professional experience working with a range of historic collections in museums, art galleries, and historic buildings – and a passion and care for what we do. We use our experience to select the correct cleaning approach for the unique needs of each object. It's all about getting the right balance between removing harmful dust and dirt, but not causing abrasion in the process, Our focus is on preventive conservation; we are not conservators and we will notify you if we see anything which requires a conservator's input. Hog & Fitch offer the following services: • Conservation cleaning, working to existing programmes or devising new routines • Object handling, moving and packing • Condition reporting, inventory checking and associated documentation • Assistance with inventory photography and associated documentation • Supervising volunteers in preventive conservation roles • Conservation engagement sessions during open hours and events or via blogs, talks, demonstrations, articles or social media • Emergency procedures training and documentation • Pest management routines and associated documentation • General assistance in times of staff shortages, including front of house activities • Training in preventive conservation and conservation cleaning techniques Whether it's one precious object from your personal collection, or a complete historic interior, we're happy to talk about how we can help.

Enjoying being back at Dunham Massey and seeing how some familiar spaces are getting on after another busy year of visit...
22/01/2020

Enjoying being back at Dunham Massey and seeing how some familiar spaces are getting on after another busy year of visitors. These might seem like robust working rooms but they are full of fragile, friable surfaces with decisions to be made every step of the way.

24/12/2019

A Merry Christmas from Hog and Fitch...and all our brushes

Happy books make happy conservation cleaners. And the Lacock Abbey reindeer and Christmas tree certainly help.
09/12/2019

Happy books make happy conservation cleaners. And the Lacock Abbey reindeer and Christmas tree certainly help.

Was that Christmas or Hallowe'en? Misty this morning at Lacock.
04/12/2019

Was that Christmas or Hallowe'en? Misty this morning at Lacock.

Last time we were book cleaning at lovely Lacock Abbey it was the height of Summer. This time there's a GIANT Christmas ...
02/12/2019

Last time we were book cleaning at lovely Lacock Abbey it was the height of Summer. This time there's a GIANT Christmas tree outside the window. But those books still need cleaning and listing, whatever the weather.

It may start looking good fairly quickly, but it's only when you get into all the awkward corners and hiding places that...
25/11/2019

It may start looking good fairly quickly, but it's only when you get into all the awkward corners and hiding places that it starts to smell clean, which is the real test. Happy today to leave behind a gleaming and suitably sweet smelling building at St Michael's Addingham.

It's been a race against the clock to turn a much-loved parish church from a building site to a place of worship ready f...
17/11/2019

It's been a race against the clock to turn a much-loved parish church from a building site to a place of worship ready for a double christening today. With the worst dust beaten into submission so the building can be used again, we can't wait to get back next week to start working on the detail.

Doesn't feel like going to work when it's somewhere like this. And there's nothing we like more than a bit of post-build...
15/11/2019

Doesn't feel like going to work when it's somewhere like this. And there's nothing we like more than a bit of post-building-work conservation cleaning.

Strange, and very moving, to be back at Auckland Castle without a car full of brushes and dusters - but what a transform...
30/10/2019

Strange, and very moving, to be back at Auckland Castle without a car full of brushes and dusters - but what a transformation! The new display is visually rich, lavishly immersive and satisfyingly thought-provoking. Might we also mention that it's looking pretty clean, too..? We won't spoil the impact by putting in lots of photos - just one perfect lion. Go and see for yourself once it's reopened this weekend. We're taking all our friends.

Really enjoyed  working with the Black and Decker volunteers  doing their bit for Auckland  Castle. Applying engineering...
24/10/2019

Really enjoyed working with the Black and Decker volunteers doing their bit for Auckland Castle. Applying engineering precision and observation to conservation cleaning works well. And the castle is looking absurdly gorgeous. Can't wait for reopening! @aucklandproject

Much needed desk time this week and we're sorting out some of the Bishop Auckland photographs from our recent conservati...
07/10/2019

Much needed desk time this week and we're sorting out some of the Bishop Auckland photographs from our recent conservation cleaning work and training sessions. We loved working with the volunteers and staff on the conservation cleaning team and can't wait to see it reopen. This really is a hugely ambitious and exciting project which has involved hard work and expertise from a lot of people.

Nice to be back  at Seaton Delaval. Always lots of progress with the project and some atmospheric weather today, too.
24/09/2019

Nice to be back at Seaton Delaval. Always lots of progress with the project and some atmospheric weather today, too.

Did one of you ring? Angela contemplating our next challenge at Auckland Castle
18/09/2019

Did one of you ring? Angela contemplating our next challenge at Auckland Castle

Sorting out objects for training sessions next week. Hello, old friends..
31/08/2019

Sorting out objects for training sessions next week. Hello, old friends..

On the road so much at the moment that we can't remember where we live, but everything's all right once you arrive at Se...
16/08/2019

On the road so much at the moment that we can't remember where we live, but everything's all right once you arrive at Seaton Delaval Hall because the architecture just takes your breath away (and the tea room was open this time, too).

Cleaning Church windows in rural Yorkshire tranquility. It requires patience to tackle awkward old dirt, pane by fragile...
14/08/2019

Cleaning Church windows in rural Yorkshire tranquility. It requires patience to tackle awkward old dirt, pane by fragile pane, and it's not for arachnophobes, but time flies past in a place like this with just the sound of the wind and the birds...and the pitter patter of a few large 8 legged friends.

Looking up to the scaffolding, looking down the scaffolding;  going up the scaffolding, going down the scaffolding...etc...
04/07/2019

Looking up to the scaffolding, looking down the scaffolding; going up the scaffolding, going down the scaffolding...etc etc. Having fun and getting plenty of exercise while conservation cleaning at The Auckland Project

After all that hard work from so many people (and we've only seen a fraction of it over the past month), it's so excitin...
01/06/2019

After all that hard work from so many people (and we've only seen a fraction of it over the past month), it's so exciting that the new Bishop Trevor Gallery and some rooms of Auckland Castle are opening today. We can't wait to go back and enjoy it as visitors rather than down on the floor or up the scaffolding as conservation cleaners! But we do now know the intimate detail of every single ledge, crevice, corner and surface - and that feels a real privilege.

Spaghetti for tea
24/05/2019

Spaghetti for tea

Happy at Bishop Auckland getting to know the details, nooks and crannies of this magnificent place
19/05/2019

Happy at Bishop Auckland getting to know the details, nooks and crannies of this magnificent place

It's 'spot the conservation cleaner time' again. We know how to spend Friday evening in style.
03/05/2019

It's 'spot the conservation cleaner time' again. We know how to spend Friday evening in style.

Working just down the road today in a space that always lifts the spirits. The annual cobweb removal at the National Tru...
23/04/2019

Working just down the road today in a space that always lifts the spirits. The annual cobweb removal at the National Trust Footprint building can only be enjoyable.

Back with our old friends the boxes from the village shop at National Trust Lacock. This mammoth sorting, documentation ...
21/02/2019

Back with our old friends the boxes from the village shop at National Trust Lacock. This mammoth sorting, documentation and repacking project is in its last phase.

When you're creeping around under the pews hunting for woodworm it's easy to forget there's all this perfectly balanced,...
16/02/2019

When you're creeping around under the pews hunting for woodworm it's easy to forget there's all this perfectly balanced, ethereal beauty up above you. It was a privilege to spend two days working in NT Gibside Chapel - although the woodworm probably did not appreciate our visit very much.

Heading back from lovely little NT Cherryburn with a quick stop to scope out next week's work at NT Gibside.  It's going...
09/02/2019

Heading back from lovely little NT Cherryburn with a quick stop to scope out next week's work at NT Gibside. It's going to be mighty cold in there but we're pleased to report that the soup is excellent.

Snow on the ground, white all around
29/01/2019

Snow on the ground, white all around

Feels as if we're working in a Dutch painting
17/01/2019

Feels as if we're working in a Dutch painting

23/12/2018

Feeling festive but maybe best not to give up the day job just yet. .

Delicious Christmas lunch and preview of some of January's work on a sunny day at gorgeous Dunham Massey.
19/12/2018

Delicious Christmas lunch and preview of some of January's work on a sunny day at gorgeous Dunham Massey.

Made a new friend yesterday - who will we meet today?
17/12/2018

Made a new friend yesterday - who will we meet today?

Spot the conservation cleaner. Lost in our work in the magnificent St Peter's Chapel, Auckland Castle.
09/12/2018

Spot the conservation cleaner. Lost in our work in the magnificent St Peter's Chapel, Auckland Castle.

Tissue puffs and sausages put to good use - and some favourite details from this week's work in the Cragside textile sto...
23/11/2018

Tissue puffs and sausages put to good use - and some favourite details from this week's work in the Cragside textile store. But why is it that work in historic houses always involves squeezing into really awkward spaces?

We know how to enjoy an evening in..All set for another day in the textile store
20/11/2018

We know how to enjoy an evening in..All set for another day in the textile store

Hello, Cragside servants' staircase. It's been a while but our knees still remember you..
16/11/2018

Hello, Cragside servants' staircase. It's been a while but our knees still remember you..

Dramatic light outside at Quarry Bank Mill. So good to see the building work and new interpretation complete and the mil...
28/10/2018

Dramatic light outside at Quarry Bank Mill. So good to see the building work and new interpretation complete and the mill fully open again. Tempting just to enjoy a happy day out but there was conservation cleaning to do first!

Friday farm friends.
05/10/2018

Friday farm friends.

Bridge House is looking autumnal and it's good to see the underwater wall repairs going ahead though the divers might ne...
01/10/2018

Bridge House is looking autumnal and it's good to see the underwater wall repairs going ahead though the divers might need that fire to dry off later.

Bodnant Garden's Pin Mill might be a small building, but creating a condition report for the interior is still a task on...
05/09/2018

Bodnant Garden's Pin Mill might be a small building, but creating a condition report for the interior is still a task on the grand scale. We're back in the office now and the kettle's on while we pull all the notes and diagrams together.

Morning commute - lovely Lacock Abbey begins its day
25/08/2018

Morning commute - lovely Lacock Abbey begins its day

Getting a closer acquaintance with some small friends from the Lacock village shop
18/08/2018

Getting a closer acquaintance with some small friends from the Lacock village shop

Beautiful little gem of a building with a combination of very fragile surfaces and persistent and sticky cobwebs for us ...
14/08/2018

Beautiful little gem of a building with a combination of very fragile surfaces and persistent and sticky cobwebs for us to grapple with. Loving working here in the spectacular setting of National Trust Bodnant Garden.

01/08/2018

Chasing an awkwardly-placed dustberg

Two good days in the company of a magnificent spinning mule - and it certainly kicks up enough dust and fluff to keep us...
25/07/2018

Two good days in the company of a magnificent spinning mule - and it certainly kicks up enough dust and fluff to keep us very busy

Ever have those dreams where you're trapped inside a giant web? We worked out that there are 578 bobbins on this creel a...
10/07/2018

Ever have those dreams where you're trapped inside a giant web? We worked out that there are 578 bobbins on this creel and we cleaned them all - with immense caution. (We're also pleased to report that we did that sum in our heads...keeping the brains as well as the conservation cleaning muscles active!)

When you've been listing cake related items you just have to branch out and try the real thing now and again - essential...
29/06/2018

When you've been listing cake related items you just have to branch out and try the real thing now and again - essential tasting session at King John's Hunting Lodge, Lacock

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I have had the privilege of working with Hog & Finch over the past 4 months during extensive Fabric Conservation work at Auckland Castle . The training was so in depth , the knowledge and professionalism really shone through. Most of the team were naive to the extent of Fabric Conservation and how physically demanding it is, this made the work more personal knowing you are protecting a valuable asset for the future.They humor and positive attitude was there even through really tough days (waxing 800 hundred year old floors by hand). They are a credit to the industry, very specialized in historic buildings, and are are known throughout the UK. My personal thanks to them for instilling the importance of what we did and will try to maintain the high level of expectation they thrive to achieve. Thanks Ladies