This country house near Eardisley, Herefordshire, was built about 1690. In the following century it was the subject of a notorious court action within one family, and this is thought to have been the inspiration for Dickens’ Bleak House. The winners of the case added a full top storey to the house, thereby compromising its proportions.
In the mid-1990s much work was done to stabilise the structure, and just as this was being completed a disastrous fire destroyed the house in January 1998. The property has been completely rebuilt on the same footprint, and top storey has been reinstated within the original hipped roof form. Around 90,000 bricks were salvaged and reused, and all services have been updated. The Study is fully panelled in English oak, and the oak staircase has been reconstructed from measured drawings made in the early 1990s. Work was undertaken in conjunction with Donald Insall Associates of London, and in 2004 the project won a ‘Restoration of the Century’ award from the Georgian Group.
© Nicholas Keeble Associates // Historic Building & Planning Consultants