Monday, May 12, 2014

Is this good news or bad news?

It is very sad that nothing seems to be happening at Ruperra except the deterioration of the buildings.
The very nearly auction of the left-hand staff house was exciting for the Trust but where does it leave us? I expect readers will have read the local papers.

We now have a new president, Edward Holland FSA who is Senior Projects adviser to the Princes Regenaeration Trust. We have several consultants who are giving us the benefit of their expertise completelt free of charge. They all want to help save Ruperra.

The Trust were advised in February by Caerphilly Borough Council's Planning Officer  that the Council cannot take any financial risk by helping us. It is tragic that always in a recession the first casualties seem to be in Heritage matters.

Pasted below is a copy of the report from Wales Online about the proposed ale of the Staff house.

(Downloaded from Wales Online)
Receivers called in for owner of Ruperra Castle
Sale of servants' quarters prevented after debt settled

The servants’ quarters of the historic 17th century Ruperra Castle in Machen, near Caerphilly
Concerns have been raised about the future of a historic South Wales castle after its owner hit financial problems.
Receivers have been appointed to ensure Ruperra Castle owner Ashraf Barakat pays back money he owes Barclays Bank, documents from Companies House show.
But Mr Barakat managed to prevent the sale of servants’ quarters within the grounds of Ruperra, at Machen, near Caerphilly, on Thursday after settling another debt.
The quarters were up for sale with Newport auction house Paul Fosh at a guide price of £50,000.
They were being sold after they had been repossessed.
Mr Fosh said: “The bank were paid off so they released their charge on the property.”
But Bristol firm Alder King has been appointed as receivers for another property in Cowbridge owned by Mr Barakat’s firm Falcon Equestrian Limited.
A spokesperon for Alder King confirmed yesterday: “We have been appointed as receivers over the property.”
Grade II-listed Ruperra, which has links to King Charles I and a Crimean War 17th Lancers captain at the Charge of the Light Brigade, went on the market for £1.5m in September 2010 after the owner abandoned plans to turn it into flats and refurbish other outbuildings.
The servants’ quarters, which are adjacent to the castle, date from the 19th and early 20th centuries.
Conservationist Mark Baker, who sits on the National Trust’s Committee for Wales, hopes the estate can be kept together.
He said: “The estate is better together than in divided ownership, especially when it’s at the heart of a golden area with the castle and outbuildings.”
The castle was built in 1626 by military leader Sir Thomas Morgan.
It is recognised by historians as among the first “mock” castles built in Wales, and in its pomp it even entertained King Charles I.
Godfrey Charles Morgan, 1st Viscount Tredegar, who was a captain in the 17th Lancers during the infamous Charge of the Light Brigade in the Crimean War, was born at Ruperra.
The castle was rebuilt after being destroyed by fire in 1785.
It was left to decay after another fire during World War II.
Mr Barakat was yesterday unavailable for comment.

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