Lancaster Castle's weather vane restored

A historic weather vane at Lancaster Castle which dates back to the 18th century has been lovingly restored.

Thursday, 2nd March 2017, 8:16 am
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 9:50 am
The weather vane at Lancaster Castle has been restored. Picture by Gary Shea.

As part of the ongoing repair and restoration works currently underway at Lancaster Castle, the Duchy of Lancaster has refurbished the weather vane on the top of the John O’Gaunt Gate.

The origins of the 40-kilo lead, iron and copper weather vane is believed to date back to around 1727, although it is possible it was first erected here as part of the post-Civil War repairs in the 1690s.

It stands on a stone block which fills the North East turret look-out post at the top of the Gatehouse.

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The weather vane at Lancaster Castle has been restored.

By the 1950s the weather vane had become drab and indistinct with almost none of the original paintwork remaining.

In 1958 the prisoners at Lancaster Castle took it down and refurbished it in the colours of the Duchy arms, re-gilding the fleur-de-lys at the fringes and restoring the crown at its peak.

In 1989, it was restored again by the Prison Service with the help of local firm Harrison and Hutchinson.

This latest restoration has been undertaken by the Duchy’s heritage architects, stonemasons, metalworkers and sign-painters.

The weather vane at Lancaster Castle has been restored.

The team has drawn on all available historical records to match the vibrancy of the colours and design.

“It now stands proudly at the top of the Gatehouse looking out over the city, where it has stood for at least 300 years and where we hope it will remain for generations,” said Graeme Chalk, Duchy Head of Project Management.