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Edinburgh World Heritage/News/Jawbone Arch – update

Jawbone Arch – update

12th March 2018

Edinburgh World Heritage

Edinburgh World Heritage and the City of Edinburgh Council and are working together to conserve and repair the Jawbone Arch, a much-loved local landmark that was removed from its location on the Meadows in 2014.

The structure consists of four whale jawbones which formed the Orkney and Fair Isle Knitters’ Stall during the International Exhibition of 1886. A year after the exhibition the jawbones were given to the city and were used to form an archway at one entrance to the park.

The conservation process is still underway and at this stage we are unable to say when the jawbones will be back in place. Conserving organic whalebone in a poor state of repair is a highly specialised and challenging technical task. Additionally, the number of conservators able to do this difficult work is limited. Further delays were also caused by the liquidation of the initial contractor’s company in 2016.

A new conservator has now been appointed and we expect to be able to provide more details on the future of the jawbones later in the year.