Again, no-one wanted to go in. Again, I didn’t want to split the group up: we’d heard the car, and spotted
someone walking a dog.
I decided to spend five minutes inside. The rooms were vandalised, partitions were pushed through, and the
local kids (or someone) had made a den in the corner. The walls and ceilings were heavily blackened as if a
sooty, oxygen-starved fire had been lit and burnt out.
The site is owned by English Partnerships who are actively working on its ‘regeneration’. That means it will
be flattened (except the Manor House), with 700 homes packed on to the elegantly landscaped lawns and
between the lines of trees. The houses will be of high quality (whatever that means), but 100 will be allocated
to first time buyers.
It looks unlikely if any of the 1930s buildings will survive; they have little architectural merit. But I felt
oddly sad at the thought of the nurses’ home being bulldozed; it just seems so brutally pretty.