Set in its own private garden, The Grange offers a retreat from the outside world, within the thriving town of Ramsgate. To stay here, in the home Pugin designed for himself and his family, offers a unique chance to step into his colourful and idiosyncratic world. In his library, surrounded and sometimes interrupted by his large family, Pugin produced much of his finest work, working at prodigious speed as designs for the House of Lords and the Medieval Court at the Great Exhibition flowed effortlessly from his pen. He reserved some of his finest flourishes for his own home: some remain, others we have reinstated. The house has a private chapel and a tower, from whose roof Pugin trained his telescope on ships in distress (today’s Landmarkers can also climb out to watch more modern shipping from the freight ferry terminal, visible from the first floor and above).
We have returned most of the house to an appearance that Pugin himself would recognise, including the intricate, jewel-bright interiors (the north courtyard and a bedroom are presented as left by Edward Pugin, who lived at The Grange after his father’s death). Today, the house has regained the glowing vitality it enjoyed in the lifetime of its brilliant and mercurial designer. It offers a unique chance to step into the colourful and idiosyncratic world Augustus Pugin created for himself, to share the same merriment in the panelled dining-room and to sit, as he did, in the library, surrounded by walls painted with the names of his favourite people and places.
Augustus Pugin came to Ramsgate in 1843, in search of ‘the delight of the sea with catholic architecture & a Library.’ Here he built St Augustine’s Grange, to live out his ideal of life in the Middle Ages in a family home nestling in the shadow of a benevolent monastery next door, completed by his son Edward and still thriving today. The Grange reflects Pugin’s belief in the Gothic style as the only true Christian architecture (he was a fervent convert to Catholicism). Ramsgate is a thriving town with growing arts and local history activity and plenty of jaunty seaside architecture, much of it dating from the days when the harbour formed a busy embarkation point to defend the country against Napoleon. Ramsgate Sands, beside the harbour, are in the best English seaside tradition and there is also a small beach, reached by steps, directly below The Grange.
Visit the magnificent St Augustine’s Church, the ‘ideal Church’ that Pugin built next door to his family home.
The Grange, St. Augustine’s Rd, Ramsgate CT11 9NZ
Tel: 01628 825925
Web: Click here