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History of The Forest Kerry

The earliest deeds for the house date back to 1709 when it consisted of 2 small dwellings. Shortly after 1822, the houses were converted into one dwelling when The Forest was the home of the Herberts, the owners of Dolforgan estate. During the mid 19th century to house was owned by the Walton family before becoming the property of the Willans family who, in 1912, carried our major improvements.

An article in the Montgomeryshire Express of 1914 detailed the improvements. "The out offices comprised of a six-roomed gardener’s cottage, stable for four horses, cow house, pig styes, kennels, wash house, boiler house, two garages (one with pit), harness room, tool houses, granary, hay loft, store rooms, potting shed, fruit room, and all the sanitary essentials."

The Forest was sold in 1922 and passed through various owners over the years who used it as a family home. The outbuildings were variously used for a pig farm and later for a poultry farm when 3 large new barns were added.

The
The Forest in 1900

The earliest deeds for the house date back to 1709 when it consisted of 2 small dwellings but was converted into one dwelling in 1822. During the mid 19th century to house along with the Dolforgan estate was owned by the Walton family and later by the Willans. John Bancroft Willans was a keen photographer and published a book about the buildings of Montogmeryshire in 1905.



Restoration 1914

In 1912 The Forest was renovated and added to, and its amenities greatly improved. Electricity was added from a “Gilkes” turbine located at Kerry sawmills and an intricate scheme of drainage was installed at great expense.

An article in the Montgomeryshire Express of November 1914 detailed the improvements. "The restored mansion had rare zoological specimens decorating its entrance hall and then consisted of spacious dining, drawing and morning rooms, a magnificent oak staircase, boudoir, four bedrooms, three dressing rooms, nursery, two bathrooms, butler’s and housemaid’s pantries, kitchen, scullery, servants hall, dairy, larders, cellars, servants quarters on top floor, laundry, and coalhouse in the kitchen yard. The out offices comprised of a six-roomed gardener’s cottage, stable for four horses, cow house, pig styes, kennels, wash house, boiler house, two garages (one with pit), harness room, tool houses, granary, hay loft, store rooms, potting shed, fruit room, and all the sanitary essentials.

 The Forest was sold away from the Dolforgan Estate in 1922 and passed through various owners over the years who used it as a family home. The outbuildings were variously used for a pig farm and later for a poultry farm.

Restoration


Restoration
Restoration 2007

Paul and Michelle Martin bought The Forest in July 2007 and work began in September. At first the house and its outbuilding did not look in too bad a condition but it quickly became apparent that much of the structure had deteriorated beyond minor repair and that urgent attention was need in all areas.

The renovations on the main house took 8 months and were sensitively carried out to respect the original architecture of the 1880s. The roof was completely replaced in reclaimed welsh slate, new plumbing replaced the old iron pipes and the house was rewired to replace old rubber cables.

 



Interior modifications

The conversion to a guest house also required the construction of 5 en-suite bathrooms in keeping with the 19th century architecture.

 

Interior


Landscaping
Landscaping and drainage

The "intricate scheme of drainage" of 1912 was found to be far from adequate so a modern new drainage system was installed. New pipes were laid across the drive and lawn to a water treatment plant.
The renovations on the main house were concluded with the rebuilding of the driveway after the removal of over 500 tonnes of soil.



 
     
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For more information about The Forest Bed and Breakfast call Paul and Michelle on 01686 621 821

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