Students come from all over the world to West Dean to learn the skills to become professional book conservators. All our students work on books and related materials from historical collections, have access to workshops 7am to 10pm seven days a week and a personal workbench, with areas for conservation, treatments, science, finishing, sharpening, secure storage, and bookbinding.
"I have particularly loved learning from fellow students in other programmes: investigating metalwork, woodworking, pottery, and musical instrument making.”
Alex Brooks, Books and Library Materials student
"As part of a community of conservators our students have access to expertise in parallel disciplines of conservation and are able to give and receive professional advice on a broad range of material types, both organic and inorganic.”
David Dorning, Programme Leader
Postgraduate Diploma (one academic year)
Through practical work you will undertake critical analysis of conservation treatments. Learn to research through practice to make and present an accurate model of a historical book structure. Study exhibition issues, metal components of books, paper conservation, disaster response and materials science. A six-week work placement in a conservation workshop, either in a public institution or a private workshop.
Complete West Dean’s Graduate Diploma in the Conservation of Books and Library Materials, or appropriate relevant experience, and a degree in a relevant subject.
This school offers programs in: