Video: Removing the Memorial Chamber stained glass windows

Watch this video to see experts carefully removing the stained glass windows in the Memorial Chamber. They removed the windows to protect and restore them during the Centre Block project.

Transcript of Removing the Memorial Chamber stained glass windows

Start of video

[Music plays]

(Text on screen: Public Services and Procurement Canada)

[Shot of stained glass windows in the Memorial Chamber.]

[Shot of stained glass windows through decorative archway.]

[Shot of Mark Thompson on camera standing in front of stained glass windows.]

(Text on screen: Mark Thompson. Senior Heritage Glass Conservator.)

MARK THOMPSON TALKS:

I like to think of stained glass as a narrative art form. It was developed to tell Biblical stories to pre-literate societies. Using glass and light, I like to think the glass work in Centre Block tells Canada’s stories. 

[Pan of the Centre Block on Parliament Hill with excavation site in front of the building.]

[Shot revealing the Memorial Chamber as well as the stained glass windows.]

[Shot of a worker wearing protective equipment removing a window in the Memorial Chamber.]

During the rehabilitation of the Parliament building’s Centre Block, the stunning stained glass windows in the Memorial Chamber are being carefully removed in order to safeguard them.

[Shot of conservator Mark Thompson wearing protective equipment and removing a window.]

[Shot of conservator Mark Thompson and project manager Lynne Strickland talking together as they are walking towards the Centre Block.]

[Shot of the scaffolding installed inside the Memorial Chamber as well as the stained glass windows.]

Conservators, like Mark Thompson, have been given the important task of ensuring these precious heritage assets are preserved for future generations.

[Shot of the Peace Tower clock.]

[Tilting shot from the altar in the Memorial Chamber up to the stained glass windows.]

Located in the Peace Tower, the Memorial Chamber stained glass windows play an important role in creating a special atmosphere in this national space.

[Shot of stained glass windows inside the Memorial Chamber.]

[Shot of the ceiling and stained glass windows inside the Memorial Chamber.]

[Shot of stained glass windows in the Memorial Chamber.]

Designed by Canadian artist Frank S.J. Hollister, the windows were installed in the late 1920s to honour those who sacrificed their lives in the Great War and other conflicts over the last century.

[Shot of stained glass windows and chandelier inside the Memorial Chamber.]

The windows commemorate the call to service, remembrance and peace.

[Shot of Lynne Strickland on camera.]

(Text on screen: Lynne Strickland. Project Manager for Heritage, Centre Block Rehabilitation Project.)

[Shot of two workers in protective equipment wrapping windows in paper.]

[Shot of two workers in protective equipment removing a window. Caution tape is wrapped around the scaffolding.]

[Shot of Lynne Strickland on camera.]

LYNNE STRICKLAND TALKS:

It represents a huge part of Canadian commitment and call to service and protecting these assets ahead of the major construction is one of the most important projects that we have underway.

[Shot from outside with three workers standing on scaffolding and removing the windows.]

[Close up shot of a worker in protective equipment carefully removing a window.]

[Close up shot a stained glass window.]

[Close up shot of stained glass window with the words: Judgment shall return unto Righteousness.]

The removal is no easy feat.  The stained glass windows are delicate—they are made of coloured glass and kiln-fired vitreous enamel—which is a glass-particle based paint.

[Shot of a worker in protective equipment scraping the silicon off the windows.]

[Shot of two workers in protective equipment cutting out shapes on paper.]

[Close up shot of a worker scrapping the silicon off the windows.]

[Close up of a worker handing on a window to another worker.]

Each stained glass window requires about ten days of effort by qualified craftspeople to prepare the work space, carefully remove and document the windows.

[Shot of conservator Mark Thompson drilling screws into a wooden box which contains stained glass windows.]

[Shot of wooden boxes containing the stained glass windows ready to be shipped to the storage facility.]

(Text on screen: Traditional glassworks. FRAGILE.)

[Panoramic shot of the warehouse where stained glass windows are being stored.]

They are then individually crated and shipped for safekeeping at an offsite restoration facility in the National Capital Region.

[Shot of conservator Mark Thompson taking a photo of a window.]

[Shot of a worker in protective equipment putting a window down on the scaffolding.]

Some pieces will need careful restoration work by conservators before they can be reinstalled.

[Shot from the outside showing three workers on scaffolding removing a window.]

[Close up shot of a worker scrapping the silicon off to remove a window.]

[Shot of conservator Mark Thompson on camera.]

MARK THOMPSON TALKS:

Most of the windows are being removed for restoration. There are a few newer ones that are also being removed for safekeeping during the construction phase.

[Shot of conservator Mark Thompson pointing at the area where the windows were.]

[Shot of conservator Mark Thompson’s back from an opening as he’s working on the windows.]

[Shot of conservator Mark Thompson on camera.]

MARK THOMPSON TALKS:

Well this will be my last project. I’m 63 years old. I’ll be retiring after this. But it’s by far the most interesting and comprehensive and the best collection of glass I’ve ever worked on. 

[Shot of Lynne Strickland on camera.]

LYNNE STRICKLAND TALKS:

Being a project manager on the Centre Block project, and specifically with the fragile asset removals and the stained glass removal project, there is a lot of honour but there is also the burden of responsibility to ensure that this project runs smoothly.

[Panoramic shot of Centre Block under construction.]

[Shot from above revealing the excavation site in front of Centre Block.]

LYNNE STRICKLAND TALKS:

Centre Block is important not only for Parliament Hill, but also all Canadians and that is throughout the entire project taken very much to heart.

[Shot from the scaffolding outside the Memorial Chamber showing three workers carefully removing a window.]

[Shot from inside the Memorial Chamber showing a worker installing from outside a blank window.]

[Shot of two workers working on different windows from inside and outside the Memorial Chamber.]

[Wide shot of the Centre Block on a nice sunny day.]

[Close up shot of the Canadian flag flying in the wind in front of the Peace Tower.]

The ongoing work within this iconic building ensures the Centre Block will continue to serve Canada and Canadians.

[Music stops]

(Text on screen: Special thanks and recognition to our colleagues at the Senate of Canada for the shared video.)

(Text on screen: Check us out: facebook.com/PSPC.SPAC, instagram.com/pspc_spac, twitter.com/pspc_spac, youtube.com/PWGSCanada)

(Public Services and Procurement Canada signature)

(Canada Wordmark)

End of video

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