The Chapter House is currently internally scaffolded as part of the #LeavesofSouthwell project for essential conservation work allowing access to the highest levels, including the rib vaulted ceiling, for the first and only time in a generation!

Professor Chris Brooke has taken some microscopic samples from the highest levels to be examined and analysed, using a process called Raman Spectroscopy, by an international team from the Universities of Bradford and Ghent. This should tell us if paint pigments are present. Preliminary results of earlier samples from lower levels taken by Chris and Dr Andrea Kirkham, were shared in one our series of ‘Lockdown Talks’ in January, available to view on request from