Historic manor restored after devastating fire

PUBLISHED: 16:18 19 October 2018 | UPDATED: 16:18 19 October 2018

Uphill Manor after the restoration project. Picture: Robin Forster

Uphill Manor after the restoration project. Picture: Robin Forster

Archant

A historic manor which was devastated by a fire two years ago has been restored to its former glory following restoration work costing several millions of pounds.

Inside Uphill Manor.Inside Uphill Manor.

A fire tore through Uphill Manor in July 2016, gutting some of the building’s roofs, floors and staircases and destroying five bedrooms and the staff quarters.

Most of the domestic quarters of the property, where owners Craig and Tina Kennedy live, escaped the blaze but it was badly affected by smoke, heat and water after firefighters used 60,000 litres of water to put out the blaze.

Some of the most historically important parts of the building, including the dining room, library, smoke room, drawing room and octagonal hall and entrance halls were also severely damaged by smoke and water.

Craig and Tina vowed to restore the historic manor – which they believed would take three years – however, the work is almost complete and the couple are ‘delighted’ with the end result.

Inside Uphill Manor.Inside Uphill Manor.

It is due to reopen next month.

Craig said: “It’s more or less finished and we are delighted with the whole thing.”

“It’s an improvement on what it was before. It is a joy to be around.

“A couple of historic areas have been restored exactly as they were.

Uphill Manor after the restoration project. Picture: Robin ForsterUphill Manor after the restoration project. Picture: Robin Forster

“Downstairs has been restored more or less exactly as it was because of the listed building status.

“Upstairs we’ve modernised the rooms – maintaining the period features.

“It’s now been completely re-plumbed and rewired with new fire alarms and heating systems.

“We are looking at being open for business at the end of October, into November. We are very proud of it.”

Uphill Manor was built in 1805 and was previously known as Uphill Castle.

It is one of the most historic buildings in the area and Craig and Tina worked with Historic England to ensure it was restored to its original state.

The couple praised the Austin Newport Group which carried out the restoration project. Craig said: “Austin Newport Group is a specialist in this type of building and they had had access to a large pool of specialists including decorators, restorers, and joiners.

“The grounds have also been landscaped, where they were damaged after two years of contractors going in and out so everything outside looks remarkable.”

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