Undershaw in Hindhead, Surrey, is the former residence of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and his family.
Conan Doyle had Undershaw built in 1897 so that his wife Louise, who was suffering from tuberculosis, could benefit from Hindhead’s better air and glorious views. He is said to have sketched the first designs that were then worked up by the architect Joseph Henry Ball.
It was at Undershaw that Conan Doyle wrote some of his most famous works including The Hound of the Baskervilles and The Return of Sherlock Holmes as well as entertaining the likes of J M Barrie and Virginia Wolfe.
Following the early death of his wife and children, Conan Doyle sold Undershaw in 1921. From 1924 the house was in use as a hotel which closed in 2004 when it was purchased by developers.
Since its closure Undershaw has been left empty, neglected and subject to vandalism. A local campaign group, The Undershaw Preservation Trust, has been vigorously fighting proposals for the buildings conversion into 3 units with 5 new dwellings in the grounds.
Waverley Borough Council’s decision to approve the plans on the 9th June 2010, dashed the Trust’s hopes of establishing a Sherlock Holmes/Conan Doyle Museum. However the group are now seeking a Judicial Review in the High Court.
Please visit The Undershaw Preservation Trust’s website for further information: http://www.saveundershaw.com/