ARE you gearing up for your annual spring clean? Imagine tackling hundreds of rooms, miles of corridors and centuries old gutters. This is the task that National Trust properties in Herefordshire face this month as they embark upon their spring clean.

At Brockhampton near Bringsty, work is currently underway to replace multiple chimney cowls at the Lower Brockhampton Manor House. Metal birdcage cowls will be added on to two live chimney flues to prevent rain getting through, prevent the wind blowing the smoke down into the room below as well as preventing birds attempting to nest. This is essential to safeguard the fabric of the building and its internal contents.

Work has also taken place to replace multiple chimney flues at the Manor House. The flues were leaking during heavy rainfall, causing issues of damp and condensation. This can result in high humidity levels in the house which can cause harm to the historic collection, much of it being made up of fabric and timber.

More generally, properties across the area will receive a thorough inspection from top to bottom, from checking the stone work for any erosion to ensuring the internal heating systems are all in the best condition - vital to keep collections and interiors free from mould and pests.

David Bailey, general manager at Brockhampton, said: "We have a unique range of buildings in our care - there's no single period or style that we look after. Throughout history, architectural styles evolved to follow trends and to reflect shifting cultures, so each property has its own story to tell - and it's our job to ensure it can be told for generations to come.

"Buildings that aren't properly maintained require far more money and time spent repairing them down the line. That's why our building surveyors work tirelessly, especially during spring, to ensure that the properties in our care are kept in the best condition possible."

The National Trust is an independent conservation charity, funded through memberships, donations, legacies and commercial operations.

To find out more information about National Trust's conservation work, please visit