22 Aug, 2017

Castle Drogo - The UK's Newest Castle

Posted By: Natalie Manifold In: Tours Comment: 0 Hit: 121

Breathtaking Drogo - a brief history.

Castle Drogo was the home of the Drewe family (Drogo=Drewe). Julius Drewe's mother was the cousin of the Peek family from Rousdon in Devon. Julius was an entrepreneur whose first role was as a tea merchant in Liverpool. He later expanded into London and began trading as Home and Colonial Stores and in 1919 he sold his shares for 3.5 million which is the equivalent of 193 million today. He was extremely wealthy.

In 1910 he bought 450 acres at Drewsteignton. His cousin Reverend Peek was rector there so he would already have been familiar with the area.
He commissioned prominent Arts and Crafts architect Edwin Lutyens (who was championed by the editor of Country Life) to build Drogo. It took nearly 20 years to build and was only completed in 1930; the war along with economic downturn had delayed the project.
Julius Drewe died in 1931 - only one year after the house was completed. His eldest son, Adrian Drew, had died in 1917 while the house was being built; he was away fighting in World War 1.
Castle Drogo Trivia:
Brittle windows
26 levels of roof
Asphalt and concrete roof with different expansion rates caused roof to leak from before the house was completed
RSJ roof supports
Lutyens warned the owner about flat roofs
Basil drew inherited in 1931 when his father died
Anthony drew gave the castle to NT 1974
Outer and inner granite walls with cavity- which the Drews insisted on being filled in
NT had the walls capped in lead - look at the lead line by the parapets.

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