As this experience draws to an end, I realise how lucky I am to have been part of it. I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to start my GeM scholarship as a guest at Villa Saraceno, a Palladian villa of the mid-16th century in the Veneto, and I am currently spending a week at Forde Abbey, a grade I listed country house built in the same period on a 12th century monastic building site. Savouring and comparing these magnificent historic buildings in relation to their landscapes is one of the great moments of this award.
Attending the SPAB Repair Course has been really interesting and useful for me. During these intensive days I had the chance to learn more about materials, repairs, maintenance of old buildings and to understand, thanks to the site visits, their application into real projects.
These are only a few of many other invaluable things I was involved in. I would like to thank Peregrine Bryant architects, the SPAB, the Landmark Trust, Historic England, the National Trust and many others who have made my stay so rewarding.
During my two months spent travelling across England, I have had the chance to meet inspiring professionals that have greatly increased my knowledge of conservation. Moreover, this adventure has highlighted the differences and similarities between the approaches to conservation both within the UK and between the UK and Italy. I feel more confident and aware, and am very grateful to all those who have allowed me to see buildings and places with new eyes.