The Scottish National Trust is to undertake the largest moth extermination in its history as it borrows large industrial freezers to chill the furniture and textiles of a 17th Century stately home to -35C.
After the moth problem drastically multiplied by fourfold in a year, the conservators looking after Newhailes House near East Lothian put their heads together to come up with a solution.
They decided to borrow 20 foot industrial shipping freezers, usually used for transporting frozen goods, and use them to freeze the moths and their young to death.
A National Trust spokesperson told The Telegraph: “They are the size of shipping crates, 20 foot long, and they switch them on and they go down to -35 and the furniature is left in there for 3 days, this kills off the moths, larvae and eggs.
“What the conservators have noticed is there’s been a four fold increase in moths in the last year.
“The knowledge is from the National Trust for Scotland conservators but the actual freezers are industrial shipping deep freezers, not actually usually used for moth busting, they’re just being borrowed for this purpose by National Trust Scotland”.
Over the next two months, the entire textile collection – from carpets and curtains to sofas, chairs and clothing – will be put into the freezers.