Venice in Peril


Internship Bursaries in Venice

City & Guilds of London Art School

Josh Horsfall and Carla Learoyd, 2023 Conservation interns, working in San Giorgio


The annual internship sponsored by Venice in Peril for BA Conservation graduates from the City & Guilds of London Art School is a valuable initiative to provide work experience to young conservators. Established in 2009 by Marina Morrisson Atwater, a trustee of Venice in Peril, this programme offers a 10-week immersive experience for interns, allowing them to live and work at the historic Benedictine Abbey of San Giorgio Maggiore in Venice.

Set up as a partnership between the Benedictine Abbey of San Giorgio Maggiore, the City & Guilds of London Art School and Venice in Peril Fund, the internship provides experience in conservation maintenance and an opportunity to explore Venice and the wide range of conservation work that is always in progress in the city. Under the guidance of Carmelo Grasso, Director of the Abbey's cultural programme, interns engage in conservation maintenance, gaining hands-on experience and making daily decisions on cleaning methods and approaches. Each work programme, devised by Grasso, entails a condition survey followed by the conservative maintenance of a defined area within the church, including any altar or monument present. The acquisition of a modular scaffolding tower in 2014 expanded the scope of projects that can be undertaken.

San Giorgio Maggiore

The internship not only offers practical training in conservation but also allows interns to explore the rich history, architecture, and environment of Venice. Living in the Benedictine abbey provides a unique opportunity for cultural immersion and a deeper understanding of the city's unique challenges and conservation needs. The interns also gain valuable insights into working on a conservation site, using scaffolding, and developing observational skills for identifying and addressing conservation issues. This programme is aimed at nurturing the next generation of conservation professionals, exemplifying the collaborative efforts required to protect the artistic and architectural treasures of Venice.

Before and After cleaning


In 2023, Carla Learoyd and Josh Horsfall, recent graduates of CLGAS, were awarded the Conservation Internship in Venice.

Carla Learoyd Statement:

If someone had told me that in 2023, I would be spending ten weeks living in a Benedictine monastery in Venice, carrying out stone conservation on a Palladian basilica, I would never have believed them. To say that the ten weeks spent in Venice were life-changing would be an understatement. From the moment we arrived, we were made to feel like part of the San Giorgio Maggiore family. Being able to carry out conservation work on such a historic building whilst being in such beautiful surroundings is a memory that will stay with me forever.

Josh Horsfall Statement:

Everyone we met working at the church was very friendly. I truly felt like a part of the place within the first month. The lunches with the monks and the staff were a lovely part of the working day, not only for the tremendous food cooked by Chef Fiorello but as a great place for learning Italian phrases and feeling like part of the family. The work went smoothly thanks to my lovely colleague Carla and support from Carmelo. It was an honour to be a small part of the history of this incredible Palladian church. Outside of the monastery, I enjoyed two weekends with my family and also proposed to my partner in San Giorgio!


For more information on the City and Guilds of London Art School and its conservation courses visit their website. Follow to Learn More

For more information about Benedicti Claustra Onlus and the Benedictine Abbey of San Giorgio Maggiore visit their website. Follow to Learn More


Venice in Peril has committed to raising £8353 each year to fund two CGLAS interns