We invite you to participate in ‘Adopt a Boss’; a new venture at St George’s to help with the conservation and restoration of the gloriously decorated interior of the Chapel of St George, Windsor Castle.

What is a Boss?

Roof bosses are decorative architectural features found on the ceilings of buildings, frequently to cover the intersection of vaulting. They became widespread with the advent of Gothic architecture and are often intricately carved with foliage, heraldic devices or other decoration.

The bosses in St George’s Chapel feature colourful heraldic arms and badges, angels, initials, dragons, animals, floral and religious symbols. Amongst them are pendant bosses, apparently suspended in space, developed in France and rarely found in England. You can see them in the Quire of St George’s Chapel.

Why do the Bosses need Adopting?

The bosses have accumulated dirt and become discoloured over the centuries. They need to be carefully cleaned and conserved so as not to damage the painted surfaces and carved detail.

A range of cleaning and conservation techniques is used including de-ionised water applied with swabs or brushes, the use of dentistry tools to pick out dirt from deeply carved detail, and the application of poultices. It is painstaking and very time-consuming work.

How you can help

The College of St George is not the financial responsibility of the State, the Church or the Crown and relies on donations to support its major Renewal Campaign for the conservation of the fabric of the Chapel and associated buildings.

Thanks to many donors the bosses in the Quire Aisles and Chantries have been cleaned.  Work on the bosses in the Quire and Nave will need to await suffiicient funds for cleaning all the vaulting, including the bosses, together with the necessary high level scaffolding in each ara.  You can help with this project by adopting a ceiling boss of your choice.

Illustrations of all of the types of the bosses available to adopt can be seen by using the links on this page.

If you Adopt a Boss you will receive

  • A photograph of the boss you are helping to conserve
  • An Adoption certificate
  • Information on the symbolic meaning of the boss
  • Information on the history and conservation of the ceiling bosses at St George’s

Click to see the bosses Category A : Category B : Category C : Category D : Category E

The Queen's Free Chapel. The Chapel of the Most Honourable and Noble Order of the Garter. The Chapel of the College of St George.