Hall refurbishment recognised by OPT

27th November 2018

Hall new

We are pleased to announce that the recent Hall refurbishment project was awarded a certificate by the Oxford Preservation Trust (OPT). The OPT recognises thoughtful development that protects historic buildings and green open spaces.

The project involved removing an old lighting scheme which glared diners and left the portraits and architectural features unlit, and replacing it with a new lighting scheme which provides functional lighting for the dining tables and directional lighting for the internal features and decorative elements, including the portraits.

In addition, the old sound system was replaced with a new installation with ultra-thin speakers, colour matched and mounted to the panelling using low-tack conservation approved adhesion.

The stained glass windows were conserved using dry clean methods, the wall plaster was repaired, and the walls were redecorated using breathable silicate paint.

A conservator cleaned the C19th carved wooden beamed ceiling, the 12 associated stone corbels beneath the wall posts, and the busts of Oscar Wilde and Lord Denning.

Water damaged areas of the Hall were re-stained by French polishers, and the C16th carved and painted elements of the linen fold panelling which lines the walls were also conserved. A light surface clean was undertaken using dry cleaning methods, and the lifted and flaking areas of paint were stabilised. All of the portraits and their frames were also cleaned whilst they were down and in storage.

The project contributes to our green agenda through the removal of old 1980s GLS bulb lighting, and the replacement with energy efficient LED lighting technology.


Robert Langley the College Surveyor collected the certificate at the OPT awards ceremony along with the Home Bursar Mark Blandford-Baker and representatives from the contractor and lighting designer. Robert said, “On behalf of Magdalen College and the wider project team, I am very pleased to receive this certificate from the Oxford Preservation Trust which recognises the contribution to Oxford made by this conservation project.”