Woodholme Manor

Listing Information

Address: 1384 Wonderland Rd N, London, Ontario
Constructed: c. 1890
Style: Gothic Revival
Priority: 1
OHA Designation:
Heritage District: N/A

Description

Woodholme Manor is one of London’s most valuable and intriguing historic homes. Built in 1893 in the late Victorian Gothic Revival style, the Manor resembles a medieval fortress. For architect Richard Shaw-Wood and his wife Sarah Isabella, the ‘castle’ and its rolling grounds recalled the green countryside estates of England, where both had roots and loved to travel. Outbuildings and stables dotted the landscape of what was then a working farm, and an imposing iron gate maintained the family’s privacy.

In the autumn of 1919, the Honourable Ray Lawson and his wife Helen fell in love with Woodholme on one of their Sunday drives. Lawson, a prominent London businessman, purchased the manor in 1920, and for many years this magnificent castle remained home to one of the most influential families in the city. In 1950, Colonel Tom Lawson and his wife Miggsie took possession of the manor, from which they continued the family tradition of philanthropy and community service for more than fifty years. In 1983, the 100th anniversary of the Royal Canadian Regiment, they played host to Prince Philip, who stayed in one of Woodholme’s luxurious guestrooms.

Woodholme Manor is as fascinating as it is beautiful. A secret passageway connects the first and second floors, and two suits of armour, purchased by Tom Lawson and said to have come from the Tower of London stand in alcoves along the main stairs. Exquisite woodwork and ornate, expansive windows lend sophistication to this London landmark.

Since 2005, Sifton has been in search of a new owner for London's only castle. On April 29th, 2010, native Londoner Sue-Anne Richardson-Siarto purchased Woodholme Manor with plans to restore the nearly 10,000 square foot private residence to its former grandeur. The project is estimated to take up to five years to complete, with the exterior to be completed within a year. Throughout the restoration Richardson-Siarto plans to maintain the Manor's exquisite architectural details, including original woodwork, ornate windows and vaulted staircase.

(Taken from http://www.woodholmepark.com/woodholme_manor_history.html May 25, 2011)

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-- JohnNew - 25 May 2011
Topic revision: 05 Jun 2011, JohnNew
 
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