Inside View

“Almost like a lord of the castle”

Jan Christian Voegt, elevator-expert at TÜV SÜD, on a royal assignment

The Great Hall of Mirrors in the Royal Palace of Herrenchiemsee in Bavaria is a very special workplace for me. After all, TÜV SÜD played a part in the construction of the palace back in 1878: the Bavarian Steam Boiler Inspection Association checked the steam engines on the transport ships and on a crane on behalf of the “fairy tale king” King Ludwig II. I’m proud that TÜV SÜD is still working at Herrenchiemsee almost a hundred and forty years later. I regularly inspect the modern elevator systems that make it easier for the more than 400,000 visitors each year to view the premises. And every two years I also inspect the “chandelier elevators” that allow the castle’s more than sixty chandeliers to be lowered from the ceiling to the floor to ensure their safety. To do this, I climb up into the attic, where a nineteenth-century crankshaft is still being used today. Even though the candles on the candelabras no longer have to be lighted by hand—the chandeliers still have to hang securely.