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Island House Restoration Ltd

Island House Laugharne was purchased by Island House Restoration Ltd in March 2020 and is a 16th century Grade 11* listed house was last occupied sixteen years ago and is now seriously dilapidated. The house has been purchased by a company, Island House Restoration Ltd whose objectives are to restore the house to its original condition and convert it into a hotel, bar and restaurant. The house is located on Wogan St close to Laugharne Castle.

The company has already discussed the restoration with Carmarthen County Council and intends to involve CADW, the Welsh government historic environment Dept, and other experts in historic building restoration. Archaeologists will also be asked to investigate the house and gardens.

An extract of Mary Curtis’s text published in the book The Antiquities of Laugharne second edition published in 1880.

A sketch of Island House from the rear of the garden by Mary Curtis (1856)

“Island House, a most ancient and interesting one, is near the castle ; its walls in some parts as thick as those of the castle. The projecting part of it is properly the middle of the house ; the other half, extending on the other side of it, was destroyed by accident by the cannon-balls fired on the castle by Cromwell’s soldiers. At that time a partisan of his was living in the house; and a small part of the half now extending out from the other side of the projecting part, was destroyed; one of the balls was preserved in the house up to 1823. It extended farther out at the back ; for on the outside wall, on the castle side, are two protuberances showing there had been a room ; besides, foundations proving a building went farther out. In the garden the foundation of a rounded tower was discovered underground in 1818; also Roman baths and leaden pipes ; an Etruscan urn was found in the Roman remains. About 150 years ago a small cottage was at the bottom of the garden not far from the wall by the Strand ; there were steps from it to the sea ; the wall at bottom of the garden did not go so far out as now. At the front of the house an old door opening into a yard bears the date 1658. There were two bridges belonging to Island House till 1800, when, through the neglect of a guardian to the then minor — the heir to the property — their possession was lost. One bridge was on the Strand, and taken away a few years ago ; the other remains close to the house. Formerly there was no thoroughfare before the house ; the public road went by that row of houses opposite the turning to Stoneway, and probably passed hence round the back of the mill which is on the Grist. This house appears in the sketch of the castle, dated 1740, and to the right of it.”

BEFORE AND AFTER IMAGES

The images on this page show some before and after pictures to demonstrate how far we have come along by clearing out debris and making the building safe.

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Progress up to 31st May 2020

Since purchasing Island House in March 2020 the following has been done .

The roofs and floors have been supported.

Debris from the collapse of roofing and floors has been removed.

The garden and house have been surveyed and record photographs taken.

A tree survey and report  was made , approved by Carmarthen County Council  , and the garden cleared of overgrowth and trees damaging the Grade 11 listed boundary wall .

Historians and archivists have been appointed to research the history of the house ,  its past owners and the damage made to the house in 1644 during the Civil War.

Architects and other consultants and advisors have been appointed .

Planning and Targets

Started archeology 1st of June 2020.

Reconstruct  all roofing before the end of 2020.

Complete the restoration of the house and open it as a boutique hotel, restaurant and bar before Summer 2023.

Consultants and Advisors

Architects -Davies Sutton , Cardiff

Structural Engineers – Mann Williams, Cardiff

Business Advisors – Landsker- Whitland , Carmarthenshire

Building Historian – Rob Scourfield – Kilgetty , Pembrokeshire

Historian and Archivist – David Llewellyn – Templeton, Pembrokeshire

Archeologists- Dyfed Archeological Trust,  Llandeilo , Carmarthenshire

Dendrochronologists – Tree Ring Services, Mitcheldean , Gloustershire

Arboriculture Consultants – David Rice Forestry

Architectural Geologist – Dr Tim Palmer , Aberystwyth University

Ecologists – Wild Wood Ecology , Caerphilly,Carmarthenshire

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