Restoration of King’s Dock Plaque

Location: Keppel Island, Singapore

History: The King’s Dock marble plaque was unveiled at the King’s Dock on 26 August 1913 by the then-governor Sir Author Henderson Young. When the Dock was constructed, it was known as the “largest dock east of Suez”.  It was then the largest dock in Asia, with the only dock bigger in size being Gladstone Dock in Liverpool.

Architectural: Marble plaque

Scope: For the restoration of the marble plaque, numerous rounds of cleaning and treatment was conducted. Cracks and stains were the main defects found on the plaque. It is likely the marble plaque was placed along the dock and has been exposed to the natural weather elements leading to the existing deteriorated condition.

Cracks were patched up using Nano-lime, a nano-suspension of calcium hydroxide in organic solvents, as it is compatible with the marble substrate. Stains were removed using various methods, buffing for the initial removal and usage of poulticing for ingrained and stubborn stains.

For the reinstatement of lettering, thin lead leaf was painstakingly hammered onto the surface while forming the unique shape of each letter. After the restoration works, consolidant and water repellent was applied to the surface of the marble plaque. The restored marble plaque was placed on a stainless-steel frame and stand for display.

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