Bronze Lions Restorations

27th January 2021

2020 was a year which nobody could have seen coming and which has brought some highs and very lows for us all. One of these highs included the opportunity to carry out the restoration of the historic bronze cast mooring point along the Embankment between Westminster bridge and Blackfriars Bridge on the north side. The emergency mooring points were installed as part of 1870 Embankment project and remains an important part of the history and decoration around the historic Thames river. The original  mooring points were completed by sculpture "T Butler  of London" and foundry " W.Corbitt & Co of Rotherham and these components can be identified by the names plate behind the jaw. 

Dorothea were instructed to replace missing or extensively damaged components with new castings, and to repairs and retain all components as far as possible. Most of the lions had suffered some form of impact damage ranging from surface dents to sectional loss, or complete loss where components have fallen into the water below. During 2020 we cast new sections, some full replacement parts were required but over 95% of all existing components were repaired and retained. The scope of works included the following; 

- Developing methodology and restoration plan 

- Providing a specification for the proposes works 

- Assessment of the existing condition and providing recommendations 

- Manufacturing new fixing to match the historic  

- Casting Replica components where required 

- Isolated repairs and restoration of existing components to stop further deteriation 

- Clean and patinate bronze ready for installation by others

- Keeping a detailed record of the works carried out to each component

The photo above identifes an area of the lions mane which had impact damage and a section has broken off and left a hole. Dorothea copy cast these localised areas and reinstated the original detail to marry up with the remaining detail including any distortion which might be present as a result of the impact. The photo on the right identifies the areas once it has been prepared ready to received the new insert peice and the left hand photo once the repair has been completed