Masonry specialist Michael Graves has been promoted to head of masonry at Lincoln Cathedral.
Joining as an apprentice in 2002, Michael has worked his way through the ranks to head of masonry following the completion of his specialist training.
With more than 19 years of experience, Michael is a member of the highly skilled Cathedral works department, and following his promotion, will be responsible for overseeing a diverse team of talented stonemasons, conservators and apprentices.
His role involves overseeing the delivery of the conservation and restoration programme on the Cathedral fabric and surrounding properties in consultation with management.
Michael has been integral to the recent National Lottery-funded restoration and renovation works to the Cathedral, which included renovating the Old Deanery building into the new visitor centre and significant conservation works to some of the Cathedral’s most treasured features including The Gallery of Kings on the West Front of the building.
Completing the Cathedral Workshop Fellowship Foundation Degree (CWF) in 2013 and subsequently becoming a Yeoman Mason from the Worshipful Company of Masons, Michael works within both the masonry and conservation teams to maintain Lincoln Cathedral’s precious architecture, features and grounds.
He will share some responsibilities with the Cathedral’s head of conservation, Jane Cowan, who has recently been awarded Accredited Conservator-Restorer (ACR) status by the Institute of Conservation (ICON).
On his promotion, Michael said: “I feel happy and proud to have been given this opportunity. I work hard and continue to push myself and have always worked towards being head of masonry – so to receive this promotion is very rewarding.
“My aim is to continue building the department with great knowledge and skills, and teach those specialists skills to others; ensuring young people have the opportunity to learn and enjoy a career in masonry.
“Being brought up in a village a few miles south of Lincoln, the Cathedral has always been something I was in awe of, and my passion continued to grow. I feel lucky to be part of the Cathedral team and the direction we are taking in works department is very exciting.”
Michael participates in various local and regional schemes to help introduce budding apprentices and trainees to the industry and provide them with a unique and varied workplace.
Director of works and property at the Cathedral, Michael Sheppard, said: “It’s fantastic to promote Michael – his hard work over the years and dedication to the Cathedral is testament to his skills and character and that deserves to be rewarded.
“We’re extremely fortunate to have such a great team of highly-skilled professionals who work tirelessly to protect and preserve the Cathedral – so that thousands of visitors from across the world can enjoy it each year.
“The masonry department will continue to thrive under Michael’s great leadership and I send him my congratulations.”
Lincoln Cathedral is committed to the training and development of craftsmanship and skills and when possible, provides a placement for at least one apprenticeship each year.