Moving to London can be stressful at the best of times. If you’re transporting high-value items, however, there are particular challenges to consider. Whether it’s fine art, musical instruments, furniture or something else entirely, each stage of the process poses risks that can be averted with specialist planning and care.
As this paper from the Canadian Conservation Institute shows, fine art is exceptionally delicate. The process of packing, transporting, storing and unpacking a single artwork can go wrong at any stage, causing irreparable damage. Each individual package must be made – ideally, custom-made – to ward off dust, humidity and (if applicable) paint slippage, as well as vibration, shock and impact. Depending on the individual piece, the entire transport chain may need to be temperature- and humidity-controlled.
But not even the safest environment will protect your precious artwork if the people who handle it are careless or ill-trained. This feature in The Guardian describes the consequences when art removals are poorly executed. Security is also a prime concern when it comes to transporting and storing works of art. As art crime expert Anthony Amore points out, art in transit is “incredibly vulnerable”. Monitoring, risk management and confidentiality are all necessary parts of the process.
Whether it’s a fragile heirloom piece or a cutting-edge design classic, moving valuable furniture requires specialist expertise. Items of furniture must be wrapped or crated to protect every possible stress point, using packaging that won’t compromise potentially delicate materials. Changes in temperature and humidity can also cause harm, so these must also be monitored throughout the process.
Every movement is a source of stress. This means the removals process has to be planned in such a way that each piece gets from your old home to your new one with the minimum number of moves. This will both help to prevent damage and extend the longevity of your valuable items. This guide from the Smithsonian Museum Conservation Institute gives an idea of the logistics involved.
The grand piano is a miracle of modern engineering. With over 10,000 moving parts, these temperamental instruments are exceptionally sensitive to temperature, humidity and vibration. Simply relocating a piano from one room to another is a delicate operation. Moving a grand piano over a long distance requires expert care and skill.
This guide outlines the complex process involved in preparing to move a piano. A grand piano can weigh as much as 500 kilograms – the same as a small horse. This means that it isn’t just the instrument that risks damage if something goes wrong in the process. An inexperienced handler can easily be injured.
If your London move involves valuable items, Cadogan Tate is ideally equipped to help. Our experienced fine arts team has worked with individual homeowners, international galleries and even a US president. Our movers also have specialised training in handling and transporting pianos. Contact our London Removals team for a quote precisely tailored to your needs.