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Report - Babies Castle; Hawkhurst ; Kent. Jan 13

Calamity Jane

i see beauty in the unloved, places & things
Regular User
#1
Babies castle gone but not forgotten.
First report of a now gone explore
History
The opening of Babies Castle was announced by the Daily Mail and became the 13th Dr.Barnado's Home. The first homes, called Hillside, were built in 1880, a short distance South of Ellerslie on Cranbrook Hill. However, they were taken over by the "Homes" in a 1883 and accommodated thirty babies and their carers. The demand for more spaces for infants continued and the land adjoining (an area of about 2 acres) was ideal for erecting a purpose-built home. Sufficient funds were raised to enable building to start in the spring of 1886. Babies Castle was born.

The building known as Babies' Castle was finally demolished in February 2015 after standing as an iconic local landmark for nearly 130 years, although, sadly, it had become a derelict site due to complete neglect over several years. It is a comment on our times that the land and two houses called Hillside, which were donated freely in the 1880s for a home for infants, was sold in 2005 - without the two houses - for £1.7million. Construction is now proceeding apace on accommodation for an older generation.

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Thanks for reading
 

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