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Dorset Hall – encouraging news

By 22 April 2022May 1st, 2022No Comments

Last Updated on 1 May 2022

 

Dorset Hall, the listed Georgian House on Kingston Road, was the home of the suffragette Rose Lamartine Yates in the early twentieth century but has since fallen into disrepair.

Barbara Gorna of Dorset Hall Group, who are working towards restoring the Hall and re-purposing it, reports on being allowed to access the hall.

It was quite extraordinary going through the door of Dorset Hall, 18 months after we discovered this somewhat decrepit old lady of a house and decided to fight for her.

Let’s be honest, it’s been quite a fight.

Access was finally granted by Clarion to permit inspection inside Dorset Hall. The roof has been repaired and the inside of the building cleaned and tidied up. We found a fine filigree plaster ceiling still remaining.  Emily Gillespie from the National Trust and Oliver Brodrick-Ward from the Architectural Heritage Trust were invited and said:

“We are delighted to be supporting this project through our Historic Assets into Community Ownership Programme, funded by Historic England. We hope that the next stage of viability work will find a sustainable future for Dorset Hall that can provide community benefit and protect the story of the women’s suffragette movement”.

The Dorset Hall Group is keen to find a sustainable future for both house and site, an important political building. To that end Dorset Hall Group working with the National Trust and will be consulting widely within the Borough and local organisations in the next few months.

Achievements so far include Clarion cleaning up the squatter’s detritus and finally repairing the roof after pressure from Historic England and Merton.

DHG brought in Funding from Clarion and AHF to pay for the options appraisal. This will be completed by October.

Paul Quinn from Clarion said:

“Clarion is looking forward to working with the National Trust and local Merton community groups to help determine the future of Dorset Hall.”

Dorset Hall Group can be contacted through its co-chair Simon Hood on sjpbhood@gmail.com.

For more about the history of the hall that was the home of a pioneering suffragette read Time and Leisure’s piece ‘The history of Dorset Hall in Wimbledon’