Anthony West House
There may be people living in Brockham (and the neighbouring villages) who do not know about Anthony West House (AWH) in Wheelers Lane, other than it being a large Victorian house next to the church hall. It was, in fact, the vicarage of Christ Church, Brockham, for many decades and provided the vicars with a large, rather chilly house and an enormous garden, the ‘glebe’, where they grew enormous quantities of vegetables to feed their large families.
In the early 1980’s the Church Commissioners decided to sell AWH and move the vicar to a more suitable house after Brockham and Betchworth parishes were amalgamated.
A local benefactor stepped in and the house was bought with the purpose of ‘providing accommodation for those who have reached sixty years of age and who are able to live independently and to care for their own needs; the properties are for the use of needy persons wanting such accommodation with priority given, at the discretion of the Association, to people having connection with Brockham and neighbouring villages in the district of Mole Valley’. Vacant accommodation is still allocated on this basis.
A charity, called Brockham Housing Trust, was established to manage AWH and ensure that the residents could live in safe and comfortable surroundings.. The site has 15 units, one of which is occupied by the ‘tenant with responsibility’, who keeps a friendly eye on the residents. The remaining units comprise 7 bungalows for two person occupancy, 3 flats for two person occupancy, 3 flats for single occupancy and a single person coach house conversion. The three single flats have stairs and no lift and are therefore more suitable for more mobile tenants. Payment is by monthly rent, which is held at a reasonable level, plus the usual energy supplies and council tax bills.
Update Spring 2023
Brockham Housing Trust, having found it increasingly difficult to recruit new trustees with the appropriate skills to fill the growing number of trustee vacancies decided an alternative way to manage AWH was required.
Brockham Housing Trust approached The Poland Trust and, after detailed discussions, both charities have agreed, in principle, that Brockham Housing Trust will transfer ownership and management of AWH to The Poland Trust. The trustees are hopeful this transfer will be completed later this year.
The charitable objectives of both charities are almost identical; with both focussed on helping people in need in Brockham and the surrounding communities. As a result, the trustees do not expect there to be any significant changes for the residents of AWH or Poland House. Pam Hammond will become a trustee of The Poland Trust to provide continuity for the Anthony West House residents.
If you are perhaps thinking of downsizing or are in need of accommodation and would like further information about Anthony West House, please contact Poland Trust.