Victorian tile cleaning in a Tudor Castle

The Green Man team were recently invited to be part of a complete refurbishment of Thornbury Castle Hotel. This magnificent structure was begun in 1510 & it felt no small thing that Henry VIII & Anne Boleyn spent 10 days here in 1535. Our role was very modest in the scale of the refurb – the main entrance hallway between the hotel check-in & the restaurant had been uncovered & was in urgent need of protecting…

The initial clean

We were given a very short window in which to carry out the initial clean (between check-out & afternoon tea!), so we arrived & got started immediately.

Professional Minton tile cleaning

As you can see in the image, these tiles have been quite damaged over time. Rather than engage in a complete tile renovation, the hotel wanted simply to thoroughly clean, then seal this important thoroughfare.

The work involved a brisk initial sweeping, followed by mechanical floor scrubbing using our trusty Numatic Hurricane. You can see the solution tank is part of the machine, allowing us to dose the correct amount of fluid to the floor, as necessary.

After small sections of the floor had been scrubbed, we used a grout brush to address the grout directly, then extracted the slurry & rinsed.

The floor then needed to be given twenty four hours to ensure it had thoroughly dried…

Midnight hours

Because the hotel is now fully operational, the only time we could apply the multiple layers of seal was between 11pm and 3am in the morning. This would give us the undisturbed time necessary for each layer to be applied, dry and so on.

Application of gloss seal to Victorian tiles

In order for the floor to be both protected & enhanced, we specified 6 layers of seal in total.

The floor absorbed an initial three coats of a colour enhancing seal, followed by 3 layers of a topical gloss wax finish.

The images here shows the Victorian tiles after their last coat of gloss wax, before completely dry.

N.B. If you have Victorian tiles at home, standard maintenance should include regular sweeping, occasional mopping & a top-up of the seal whenever necessary. You will be able to tell when the seals are failing, as the flooring will become absorbent, rather than resisting liquids.

In between the application of each coat of seal, we were able to walk the grounds alone on a perfectly clear night…

Commercial cleaning services

When the time came to leave, we were quite sad to go. The floor responded very well to the treatments & the management have expressed their thanks. I hope we get to return some day.

Victorian tile specialists