Mobile monitoring

Dudley Castle expert Amy Hickman uses her smart phone to keep tabs on the state of the 11th century monument at the heart of the zoo.

Each Tuesday the knowledgeable education assistant accesses areas of the iconic castle closed off to the public but she also scrutinises the stonework using the camera on her mobile.

By zooming in on the castle, she can take a shot and then enlarge the image on the screen to get a detailed insight into the condition of the ancient building.

Amy said: “Every week, usually on a Tuesday, I go up to the second floor to the great hall, along to the portico and the solar, which was the Lord’s private room, on to the gate and then head down by the cannons to inspect the castle.

“But for the areas I can’t physically get to I use a tip given to me by an architect during the last external inspection in 2015.

“He showed me how zooming in on pictures on a mobile can give us an exceptionally close look at the masonry, allowing us to make sure the monument is in good order. And it really works!”

Amy also carries out a daily visual check of the castle and takes visitors on castle tours as well as teaching younger visitors about the history of the building through engaging workshops such as Horrible Histories.

DZG is currently in the process of applying for funding assistance to carry out a programme of restoration work on the castle and other listed monuments across its 40-acre site.