Wednesday, 6 October 2010

£2m restoration plan for John Fowles' Lyme Regis house

The Landmark Trust has applied to West Dorset Council for Listed Building Consent for their plans to restore Belmont House to its eighteenth-century villa form as owned by Mrs Eleanor Coade (1733-1821), the remarkable businesswoman responsible for the invention of Coade stone.

In the 1880s, two large rear wings were added to the house by a local doctor. These became dilapidated and were largely removed in the 1960s. The Landmark Trust has concluded that the remnants of these later extensions so compromise the intent of the original eighteenth-century seaside villa that their removal is justified.

Once restored the building will be available for self-catering holidays for eight people, so assuring an income for its future maintenance. Working with the Lyme Regis Philpot Museum, the Landmark Trust also plans to open a museum room in the former coach house which will be devoted to the house’s past inhabitants.

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