The challenges of conserving the Manchester banner include reducing stains and overall soiling, improving the poor condition of the upper corners to allow for safe display, and stabilizing lifting paint around the many areas of cracking and abrasion. MTS summer intern Trevor Lamb began by vacuuming the banner with a micro-suction attachment. He then used vulcanized rubber sponges to dramatically lift dirt and deposits from the front and back, leaving behind a much-improved, whiter surface.
The banner is riddled with small holes and areas where the paint is missing, exposing the bare canvas beneath. Therefore we decided to back the banner with a product called BEVA-Tex. Consisting of spun-bonded polyester fabric called Hollytex coated with a thin membrane of thermoplastic BEVA adhesive, BEVA-Tex provides a strong yet light-weight support for fabric, paper, and objects. We used it one other time on an opera banner documented in the MTS Blog "Yankee Doodle Drama."