Help keep Ted Heath's home open
PUBLISHED: 11:51 30 January 2012
Readers who were instrumental in saving the historic home of former Prime Minister and Bexley MP Sir Edward Heath, now have the chance to help it remain open for another three years.
Bexley residents backed the campaign to prevent the site in Salisbury from being sold in September but now trustees of the Sir Edward Heath Charitable Foundation have applied for planning permission to keep it open to the public for three years from March.
Co-ordinator of campaigning group, The Friends of Arundells, and former Erith resident, Tony Burnside said: “This is of huge historic importance as it will save this gift to the nation for at least another three years.
“People throughout the country are supporting this and Bexley played a very important role in securing the house last September by writing to the Charity Commission.
“This year they can build upon that success by contacting Wiltshire Council to support this vital planning application We need a very large response from the public. Without this planning permission, this house will be sold by the end of the year so there’s some urgency.”
Arundells and its contents are estimated to be worth £10 million.
In 2010, 30,000 visitors passed through its doors and planning permission for the site to remain open to the public expired last October.
The property, which dates back to the early 18th century, is surrounded by a two-acre walled garden stretching down to the River Avon.
Its collection of art works includes two paintings by Sir Winston Churchill, who presented them to the politician.
The Friends of Arundells are urging the public to contact the council to support the application. Email email@example.com quoting reference number S/2012/0021 (Arundells, 59 The Close, Salisbury, SP1 2EN) or go to the council website at www.wiltshire.gov.uk All emails must be received by Thursday February 9.