Following an initial training in modern piano technology Lucy Coad completed a three year apprenticeship with conservator Tim Hamilton specialising in the conservation and restoration of historical pianofortes.
In response to the growing need to conserve and repair surviving instruments in private and public ownership, Lucy later chose to further specialise in square pianos. This led to the establishment of Lucy Coad Square Piano Conservation and Repair in London in 1985, later moving to our current location between Bristol and Bath. Our work ranges from the making of a single string through to the complete rebuilding of structurally failed instruments. Our experience is considerable, with a huge number of instruments having come through the workshop, from clients worldwide that include national heritage bodies, museums, private collectors, dealers, colleges of music, royal schools and performers both amateur and professional. Pianos are prepared to meet differing requirements, from conservation for display only through to performance standard, and always with the expertise, care and respect due to early instruments. The workshop continues to work primarily with square pianos dating from the 1760s-1860s, however, in recent years the business has grown and now employs a specialised team to undertake the conservation and repair of grand pianos of the same period.
Our methods aim to conserve, where possible, all original components. When it is not possible to conserve, or components are missing, an accurate replacement is made and the original returned for future historic reference. Thorough research into original materials allows us to use only suitable replacement woods, cloths, leathers and alloys, all being vital to achieve the correct 'touch' and sound. All work is documented in detail in an accompanying photographic report.