Thursday, 10 April 2014

Historic Buildings YOU Could Live In

A couple of comments from readers on my 'Langland Bay' post got me thinking the other day.  We're really spoilt with historic buildings here in the UK, and whilst I think we sometimes take our architectural backdrop for granted, most of us are very curious as to what these buildings look like on the inside, particularly if the novelty is that they've been turned into luxury apartments.

May I present then, a peek inside a selection of historic buildings that now anyone one of us - if we had the budget - could own a slice of!  All of these are in South Wales, but there are certainly very similar buildings across the whole of the UK, you can bet your money on it.

The former 1930s hospital at Hayes Point, Sully has a selection of apartments up for sale, all fairly spacious and with wonderful seaviews.  I've spotted a 2 bed apartment for £199,950.  The grounds are pretty fabulous, and although the complex has been subject to lots of rennovations, there are still some original features around the building if you hunt for them!


The Old Arts College, Newport is a grand old Grade II listed building, and the 'public' areas are still very much as they were.  Don't expect the flats themselves to hold any original features though, they're all very much beige, laminated, and devoid of soul.  A 2 bedroom apartment is currently up for £110,000.


Former hotel, The Grand, in Cardiff city centre has a selection of apartments for sale.  Currently a two bedroom apartment that seems quite small, is up for sale at £164,950.

If something with a bit more character on the inside too appeals, then how about an apartment at former psychiatric hospital, Pen y Fal, in Abergavenny?  Victorian Grade II listed, this impressive building currently holds a two bedroom apartment for sale at £199,950, with at least some interesting windows as a feature.

Would you ever be tempted to live in a building like one of these?  What do you think about converting historic buildings into flats, is this a good thing or not??


  1. I like the idea that the buildings aren't destroyed. That would be such a shame. I think they could have tried a bit harder with the inside finishings though.


  2. I would agree completely with Suzanne's comment. I applaud that these building are not just simply torn down. In my town there's a lot of history from the gold rush days and lots of historic building went up. Unfortunately most of them also got torn down to make room for more modern buildings in the 1970s. I think it's great that they are keeping these old building around and are putting them to current use. Though I am disappointed that they didn't try to do a better job to keep some of the old interior finishings. Even if they would have redone it to some kind of period look it would have been a lot more interesting. Thanks for posting more about this Porcelina.

  3. I think that if the buildings can't be kept for their original use, then converting them into flats is the best thing. However, the way the conversion is done is crucial; too often there's a desire to make too many small flats which don't make the best of the buildings. I think that one problem with these is that the sellers have made the interiors too bland, too modern, with boring colours. Also, whoever converted them didn't do a good job retaining the original features -- most of the ceilings are too low. I've seen better conversions, where the rooms are kept to a good original size with full ceiling-height for the sitting room and then the bedrooms and kitchen are smaller and have lowered ceilings to match. The best conversions make use of the lowered ceilings by making lofts, providing much-needed storage which is unusual in a flat.

  4. Breathtaking pics and those buildings are awesome! I´d love to live in old buildings especially if they are well maintained. :)

  5. If it's a matter of converting them (leaving the bones, if you will, of the building in tact in the process) or knocking them down, I'm all for conversion. It's far more important in many cases to preserve the building as a whole and remember its former days/uses than to fell obliged to always ensure it remains in the function it was built for.

    ♥ Jessica

  6. It must be so fun to live somewhere full of historic buildings! We don't have much of that in AZ and even our historic is pretty new compared to Europe!


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