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Renovations at the RSC

To mark the 400th anniversary since William Shakespeare’s death, the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford-upon-Avon has been conducting some extensive renovations at the The Other Place and the Swan Wing of its iconic theatres.

The Swan Wing project has seen a widespread renovation of both the interior of the building and the façade, as the RSC aims to reveal the hidden heritage of the building, whilst also enhancing the beautiful public spaces.

Part of the renovation work saw specific requirements arise, namely the need to restore internal doors to their former glory after many years of sustained use by the public and performers alike.

Realising the specific nature of the work, the RSC’s contractors turned to Plastic Surgeon, as experts in repair, to go about conducting the job, saving both the costs of replacement, as well as offering a sustainable, waste reducing alternative. The task at hand was no mean feat and involved the restoration of nearly fifty internal doors.

Plastic Surgeon’s team of fine finishers were required to remove scratches, chips and scuffs from the doors – the hallmarks of long use – filling them in where possible and ironing out any evidence of their existence, effectively making them ‘good as new’.

With the doors made from wood painted red, specific challenges involved finding the right colour to match the existing shade. Alongside this, the doors were powder coated and required sheen reducer to establish the right level of lustre so that the repair work didn’t standout.

Other challenges involved the fact that the RSC theatre was still in full working order, with rehearsals ongoing throughout the work’s completion as well as public performances in the evenings. Plastic Surgeon’s finishers had to ensure that any spraying of the doors was finished by 10am each morning due to the possible respiratory side effects associated with spray painting. They also had to ensure that ongoing jobs were appropriately tidy, even if unfinished, so as to be sufficiently presentable to RSC visitors and theatregoers.

In total the job took three weeks for Plastic Surgeon to complete, with no replacement doors required and all jobs finished to a standard where the repair work was unrecognisable. Disruption was also minimised, allowing the theatre to continue as normal.

The repaired doors, as part of the wider restoration work, are set to be officially unveiled in time for the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death on April 23rd 2016, something that Plastic Surgeon is very proud to have been a part of.

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