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Project information

The Warren House, Kimbolton, Cambridgeshire

The Warren House is a fine Grade II* folly which stands alone and derelict on an escarpment overlooking Kimbolton Castle in Cambridgeshire. The Landmark Trust launched an appeal in November 2010 to raise the funds to restore the folly and give it a new and secure future.

November 2010 - December 2011

Charity information: The Landmark Trust

The Landmark Trust logo
  • Need


    The Warren House began life in the late 16th century as a humble timber-framed cottage, perhaps for a warrener or gamekeeper, or as a hunting lodge. Today, the Warren House, which is on the English Heritage Buildings at Risk register, is in a dreadful state. The principal timber corner posts are decaying and the porch is roofless. The first floor and its ceiling joists have collapsed, leaving the walls bulging and the interior a hollow shell.


    Craftsmen will repair the buidling using traditional skills, matching new materials to the originals, to create a Landmark for two people, able to earn its own upkeep by being let for holidays so that it never again falls into disrepair. Carefully chosen books and the History Album will keep the story of this intruiguing folly alive for those who stay, to experience and discover for themselves its history and enjoy the magnificent views of the castle and valley below.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To halt the deterioration of the Warren House and give the building a new purpose for all to enjoy.


    » Repairs and restoration will be undertaken by craftsmen using traditional skills and materials.

    What success will look like

    The Warren House will be saved from further decline, and restored sympathetically whilst providing comfortable accommodation and a sustainable use.

    Aim 2

    To preserve the history of the building and its surroundings, whilst educating vistors.


    » A History Album, written by the Landmark Trust's Historian, will document the building's past and the restoration process.
    » A carefully chosen library will offer visitors the opportunity to learn more about the local area and its history.

    What success will look like

    Visitors to the Warren House will take away with them an experience and understanding of its history. This ancient cottage will survive for future generations to enjoy.

    Aim 3

    To give the building a self sustaining future.


    » Offering the building for holidays, the income from which will fund upkeep and maintenance of the building, and introduce new visitors to the area.

    What success will look like

    Success through regular occupancy, and income received from lettings, to support the cost of maintenance and upkeep.

  • Impact


    The project will reverse the decline of this ancient folly and offer a window into the life of the warrener and his family who lived and worked here. The building will bring new visitors to this area who will appreciate the beautiful coutryside and wildlife, and contribute to the local economy. The successful project will protect the future of this building through the income it generates as holiday accommodation.


    The Warren House is almost a kilometre away from main connection points for electric and water services. One possible route is also over a neighbouring farmer's land, who we may have to compensate. If the costs are higher than expected then we may have to review the budget for the project to save costs elsewhere. If the tenders for the project come under budget then this may cover any extra costs incurred.


    We report to our donors through personalised communications, for example, monthly emails, bi-annual newsletters, an annual Supporter Update, and via information posted on our website. All donors to the appeal will be invited to an open day to celebrate and see the completed project.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £610,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £610,000 Restoration Costs Restoration costs

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    English Heritage £106,000 Conditional
    Huntingdonshire District Council £4,000 Conditional
    Individual supporters £85,996 Guaranteed
    The Monument Trust £390,000 Conditional
    Other Trusts and Foundations £2,000 Conditional
  • Background


    The Warren House is located on an escarpment overlooking Kimbolton Castle (which now forms part of Kimbolton School) where Queen Katherine of Aragon spent her final days. Kimbolton is a small village in rural Cambridgeshire yet is just half an hour north of Bedford and less than two hours north of London. Close by are the historic villages of St Ives and St Neots, nestled on the banks of the River Great Ouse.


    The project will benefit visitors to the area who will have the opportunity to stay in or see the restored folly. Craftsmen will benefit from being able to apply and learn traditional skills whilst working on the building. Future generations will benefit from being able to see the evidence of a lost way of life and an important part of our heritage.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    The Landmark Trust is one of Britain’s leading building conservation charities. For over 40 years it has been rescuing historic buildings at risk, giving them new life. Once restored, Landmarks are let as inspiring places to stay and the income supports their ongoing upkeep and maintenance. Since its formation in 1965, over 190 buildings across the country have been saved by the Landmark Trust and more than 65,000 people now stay in Landmarks each year and visit them on Open Days.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Alastair Dick-Cleland

    Alastair is the Project Manager for the Warren House and is central to delivering the project, supported by others.

The exterior of the Warren House

The exterior of the Warren House

As a pupil at Kimbolton School I looked out on this folly almost every day and I'm really pleased that the Landmark Trust is to rescue it.

Simon Thurley - Chief Executive, English Heritage