Press Release: Official opening celebrated successful restoration of Northwood House Rotunda
22nd August 2019
On Monday 12th August the Rotunda at Northwood House was officially re-opened by Lora Peacey-Wilcox, Mayor of Cowes during the world-famous Cowes Week Regatta.
The project to restore and protect this iconic Georgian building built in 1838 was made possible by a grant from the Coastal Revival Fund.
Roseleen Cullen, Chair of Northwood House Charitable Trust Co Ltd and the Directors welcomed the Mayor to the recently redecorated Rotunda– an entrance that has welcomed prime ministers, dignitaries, royalty and the Isle of Wight community for nearly two centuries.
Guests included Isle of Wight MP Bob Seeley, Mr Geoff Underwood High Sherriff, Mr Geoff Banks, Former Cowes Town Mayor, Ms Fran Collins CEO of Red Funnel, Mr David Riley, Chairman of Cowes Harbour Commission, Captain Stuart McIntosh, Cowes Harbour Commission and Mr George Cameron, Chairman of Isle of Wight Council. The Reverend Andrew Poppe gave a brief blessing, celebrating the completion of the restoration and welcoming visitors for generations to come.
Bob Seeley said: “It was lovely to attend the reopening of the Northwood House rotunda which has in part been funded by the Government’s Coastal Revival Fund. Well done to the Northwood House Trust and its fabulous volunteers for restoring this Island treasure. The rotunda has welcomed Prime Minister’s, royalty and Islanders for around 200 years. It’s looking fantastic and I’m really pleased people will be able to enjoy it for years to come.”
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Photos attached – credit Debs Allan. More are available on request.
About Northwood House
Northwood House is an iconic grade II* listed Georgian manor house set in beautiful Northwood Park in the heart of Cowes.
The Estate has a rich history of hosting events and celebrations of all kinds. Purchased in 1793 by George Ward, a successful London merchant, the House was rebuilt and extensively decorated by his son, George Henry Ward. Many lavish parties were thrown by the Wards throughout the Georgian and Victorian eras when the Island was a popular destination for the royal family.
The house was gifted to Cowes Urban District Council in 1929. In 2012 Northwood House Charitable Trust Co. Ltd was established to ensure the maintenance and development of the estate for the continued benefit of the residents and visitors to Cowes.
Recent press releases are available at https://www.northwoodhouse.org/charitable-trust/newsroom/
About the Coastal Revival Fund
The Coastal Revival Fund (CRF) was introduced in 2015-16 by the Department for Communities and Local Government to help coastal areas bring at risk heritage and community assets back into economic use. Since 2015, The Coastal Revival Fund (CRF) has provided £4.7 million to support 117 such projects which has helped unlock the economic potential of hard-to-tackle buildings, facilities and amusements such as piers, lidos and promenades.
This year each project was able to bid for up to £50,000 of funding to help identify a new role for iconic buildings and structures in need of restoration.
Six of the winning projects include grants for sites which are classed as ‘at risk’ by Historic England including Northwood House Rotunda on the Isle of Wight, a former Ice Factory in Grimsby, an Elizabethan House in Plymouth, an historic artillery Fort in Essex, a Miners Chapel in the heart of the community in St. Just, Penrith, and, the iconic Rock Gardens of Ramsgate.
The Coastal Revival Fund grant is administered through the Isle of Wight Council and the Charity has liaised closely with the Council’s Planning and Housing Services team.