It’s a funny thing about opening up houses for showing through the summer months – it seems to take ages getting all the rooms set, with cleaning the furniture as carefully but thoroughly as their age and fragile state allows. We carefully take the dust covers off and brush each item down to ensure nothing can attract further dust as we move around. The wooden arms and legs of each are dusted and wiped with an e-cloth lightly moistened with furniture care oil or polish – it’s not soaked, just a very light touch to keep each piece looking and smelling tip top. The fabrics of each room have to also be gently shaken and a sturdy person on a ladder climbs up to the hangings to check they’re still rest free and able to move if needed. There are the orginal wooden window shutter in each room and these are closed every night after visiting is over – that’s an exciting task in itself. Buyt it is vital to preserve the rooms and contents.