Lea Hough has been fundamental in helping a once-doomed guesthouse in the Lake District to be completed and opened for business.

Dome House, which was featured on Grand Designs in 2010, was designed by architectural designer and owner Robert Gaukroger. Conceived as an eco-home with a separate wing of guest accommodation in Bowness-in-Windermere, the property fell victim to project overruns and overspend when the original owners ran out of money before the ambitious build was complete.

Described as ‘awe-inspiring’ by Grand Designs presenter Kevin McCloud, the vast property, with its characteristic curved, grass-covered roof, gained the attention of a mystery donor when its construction and renovation works ran into difficulty. The donor, who has now been revealed as Yvonne Malley, provided the Gaukroger family with a loan to allow them to retain ownership of the building and see its works through to completion. Although, as seen in Grand Designs Revisited, Dome House was eventually finished in 2011, the family were unable to make a go of the project as a B&B business, eventually putting it on the market for sale in 2016.

Lea Hough got involved with the project when Yvonne Malley purchased the property in November 2016. After a detailed survey, it became apparent that much of the original work that had been undertaken on the property had been completed to a poor standard, and a great deal of work was required to improve the construction and bring it up to suitable living standards.

From there, Lea Hough was further appointed to complete drawings, identify a scope of works, appoint a contractor and then project-manage the refurbishment of the property through to completion.

We’re pleased to say that the story has reached a happy ending – with Dome House now fully completed and open for business as a guesthouse once again – under the new management of Phil McGuire, Yvonne’s son, and his wife Joyce.

Paul Dignan of Lea Hough commented:

“The Dome House story is a prime example of how a building project can go wrong if professional expertise isn’t sought. Even despite a spend of over £1 million by the original owner, works had been completed to a very poor standard – with many of the fundamental elements of the building needing to be re-addressed.

“This project has involved a lot of hard work and we’re delighted that Yvonne was able to step in and rescue this truly unique property.”

Yvonne Malley said:

“The Dome House captured my attention from the outset and having become involved as a donor for the project back in 2011, it seemed the natural next step to buy it outright when it became available.

“It has been a long road since then but the professional and thorough approach taken by the team at Lea Hough has been fundamental in seeing the project though to its final completion. I’m delighted that the true potential of this spectacular building can now be realised and I wish Phil and Joyce every success with taking it forward.”

For more information and bookings, take a look at Dome House’s website https://www.domehouselakes.co.uk/

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Lea Hough is a trading name of Lea Hough & Co LLP, which is a Limited Liability Partnership registered in England and Wales under partnership number OC306054.
Registered Office: Oakshaw House, 2 Capricorn Park, Blakewater Road, Blackburn, Lancashire, BB1 5QR