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Broomfield House Restoration


Broomfield House, the centrepiece of Broomfield Park, has been swathed in scaffolding since a series of disastrous fires in the 1980s.  Efforts to rebuild it have been led by the Broomfield House Trust and Broomfield House Working Group.  In 2012 they joined forces with Enfield Council to bid for Heritage Lottery Fund money to restore this historic building.

For detailed information about the project to restore Broomfield House, visit


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Broomfield House and Stableyard are being advertised for sale.  The marketing brief states that "The long leasehold interest is being marketed for sale on a private treaty basis, following open competition. Unconditional and conditional offers are invited for both parcels of land together, for the reconstruction and restoration of the House and the restoration of the Stable Block."

Below, Colin Younger, chair of the Broomfield House Trust, comments on what he calls "the last hope for Broomfield House".

broomfield house marketing briefAs some have already seen, Broomfield House and stableyard are being advertised in the Estates Gazette, which identifies itself as “The number one title in commercial property, providing market intelligence, comment and interviews every week”.  They are also being directly marketed by GVA, which claims to be “Britain’s leading and most diverse real estate advisory-led business”.

The ad lists Broomfield House and stableyard as a restoration and development opportunity. This breaks down into a reconstruction and restoration opportunity for the Grade II* Broomfield House and a conversion and redevelopment opportunity for the stables (subject to planning permission).  It invites conditional and unconditional offers and a long leasehold interest.

There are many supporting documents available to interested parties, setting out the background to, and constraints on, this marketing approach.  The constraints include vehicle access being by a Grade II* listed arched gateway. The Council believe that they have a solution to the issue of the covenants limiting developments in the park.

We have reached this position after six years of intensive lobbying and working closely with Enfield Council and Historic England to find ways of funding the restoration and rebuilding of Broomfield House.  None of this has been successful, and this is the final throw of the dice.

In direct line with the Broomfield House Trust’s registered charitable objectives, the Trust (supported by the Friends of Broomfield Park) has continued throughout to press for the community interest and community access.  Understandably, the Council has wider issues to take in to account and the marketing brief includes community access as a desirable, not essential objective.  If bids fail to meet our registered objectives, the Trust at least will have to consider its position. The Board next meets on 15 November but we would hope to have some indication of how things have gone before then.

This is the last hope for Broomfield House.

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hidden treasures jan 2019

This Saturday sees the launch of the long awaited exhibition about Broomfield House and the surrounding park, organised jointly by Enfield Museum and the Broomfield House Trust with the support of the Enfield Society.  The exhibition, Hidden Treasures - Revealing Broomfield House and Park, runs until 6th January 2019. 

Many local people will remember when Broomfield House was open to the public, some will have taken there to be weighed as babies or visited its museum, art displays and café.  The exhibition's photographs, paintings and objects - salvaged after the fires - will bring back memories.

One of the glories of Broomfield House was its staircase adorned by murals painted by Gerard Lanscroon.  These were rescued from the fire and have been in storage ever since.  The exhibition will include a newly restored section of the murals, depicting the godess Minerva.

There will be an accompanying programme of events, some at the Dugdale, others in Broomfield Park, suitable for all ages from babies upwards, comprising talks on the history of both house and park, craft sessions, an art exhibition, a poetry workshop, guided tours of the park, a children's tree trail, a special halloween event and a "Taste of Broomfield" evening

Exhibition events at the Dugdale Centre

Saturday Arts Club

Pop in to the Museum on the 1st Saturday of the Month and make a simple and quick craft to take home.

  • Saturday 4th August: Inspired by the Flowers at Broomfield Park
  • Saturday 1st September: Inspired by the Broomfield Boating Lake
  • Saturday 6th October: Inspired by the Lanscroon Art Murals
  • Saturday 3rd November: Inspired by the Gardens at Broomfield
  • Saturday 1st December: Inspired by Greek Gods and Goddesses

Sessions are: 10.30am-11am, 11am-11.30am, 11.30am-12 noon.

Find out more here

Adult Museum Makers

The 1st Monday of every month, 6.30pm-8pm

Suitable for anyone who enjoys making and being creative, no skills necessary! Come and try your hand at new skills and techniques, meet new people and embrace your creative side in a friendly and informal workshop. Advance booking recommended.

  • Monday 6th August - Book making inspired by the bees of Broomfield.
  • Monday 3rd September - Origami fabric butterfly brooch inspired by the butterflies of Broomfield museum.
  • Monday 1st October - A pointillism painting inspired by the boating lake at Broomfield park.
  • Monday 5th November - A photo montage relief collage inspired by postcards of Broomfield house and park.
  • Monday 3rd December - A textile colour swatch panel inspired by the Lanscroon murals.

Find out more here:

Baby Museum Makers

Every 1st Tuesday of the Month, 10.30am - 11.30am

Join us for a storytelling session and make a simple arts craft to take home, suitable for ages 3-4 years.

  • 4th September 2018 - Inspired by picnics in Broomfield Park
  • 2nd October 2018 - Inspired by the Broomfield Bees
  • 6th November 2018 - Inspired by the Broomfield Art Murals
  • 4th December 2018 - Inspired by the Natural History Collections at Broomfield Museum

Find out more here:

Tuesday Talks

Once a month hear free talks from a variety of experts on the history of Broomfield House and Park as well as those who manage Broomfield Park today.

A variety of FREE talks on various aspects of Broomfield House and Park.

  • Tuesday 21st August: Broomfield Orchard & Conservatory Talk by David
  • Tuesday 11th September: The Lanscroon Murals at Broomfield House with Dr Mark Banting.
  • Tuesday 9th October: The Broomfield Bees with Kim Lumley
  • Tuesday 13th November: The Early History of Broomfield by Ivor Evans
  • Tuesday 11th December: Traditional woodworking inspired by the Broomfield House Staircase by Ralph Hutchings

Online booking is advised but you can also turn up on the day and get a FREE ticket at box office

Find out more here

Half Term Halloween Workshops

Join us in half term to explore the exhibition and make your own Haunted Broomfield House to take home.

Book here

Museums at Night - Taste of Broomfield Evening

Join us on Thursday 25th October for a tasting evening of produce made at Broomfield Park or nearby. There will be Halloween activities suitable for all, live music and bar.

Find out more here

Poetry Workshop

On Saturday 24th November, join us for an afternoon of poetry workshops inspired by the current exhibition and memories of Broomfield Park and the surrounding area. Delivered by Palmers Green Poetry Group. Find out more here

Art Exhibition - Passing Time, Moments in Broomfield, 2nd-27th October 2018

Local artist Patrick Samuel has created a special exhibition inspired by his own interactions with Broomfield Park and the surrounding area. FREE to visit.

Find out more here

Advance online bookings recommended for all events include free ones. Book online or pop into the Dugdale Centre to book at Box Office.

Exhibition events in Broomfield Park

Children's Tree Trail

Every Wednesday and Sunday, Broomfield Conservatory will be delivering a free tree trail in Broomfield Park for children.

Find out more here

Revealed Tours of Broomfield Park

Join The Broomfield House Trust for a guided walk of Broomfield Park, revealing little known facts about the history of the house and the park.

Dates: 29 August, 17 October, at 1.30pm

Find out more here

Meet The Trust

Meet the Broomfield House Trust at the Palmers Green Festival. and discover more about them and learn more about the house and park!

Check the Palmers Green Festival website here for further details, including opening times.

 Advance online bookings recommended for all events include free ones. Book online or pop into the Dugdale Centre to book at Box Office.

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Colin Younger's Avatar
Colin Younger posted a reply #4000 28 Jul 2018 14:37
The opening of the exhibition last night went very well. The restored Minerva panel is a triumph and the short film of the work is a revelation. See the Dugdale centre's short posting at
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Colin Younger posted a reply #4001 29 Jul 2018 15:45
Attached is the August programme for events in Broomfield Park and the Dugdale centre.

File Attachment:

File Name: 20180729Au...mme.docx
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PGC Webmaster posted a reply #4005 01 Aug 2018 23:12

Exhibition curator Stacey Ann Bagdi with the restored section of one of the Lanscroon murals.

Broomfield House Trust board members at the exhibition opening. Left-to-right: Ivor Evans, Colin Younger, Kim Lumley

Information about the exhibition and associated events at the Dugdale and in Broomfield Park
Colin Younger's Avatar
Colin Younger posted a reply #4006 02 Aug 2018 10:31
To avoid any doubt, the restoration of the Minerva panel was funded by The Broomfield House Trust with the assistance of a grant from the Enfield Society.
Colin Younger's Avatar
Colin Younger posted a reply #4028 23 Aug 2018 16:28
See the amazing restoration of a key section of the Lanscroon murals in progress, go to the exhibition and see the real thing !

Adrian Day's Avatar
Adrian Day posted a reply #4030 23 Aug 2018 22:44
I visited this week - and it was well worth the trip. Will go back for a second look in the autumn. Well done to all involved.
Colin Younger's Avatar
Colin Younger posted a reply #4277 09 Dec 2018 13:47
Tuesday 11th December, 1pm

- Traditional woodworking inspired by the Broomfield House Staircase by Ralph Hutchings. Hear all about 18th Century woodworking skills from Ralph Hutchings who assisted with the removal of the Grand Staircase in Broomfield after the last fire.

Pop into the Dugdale Cafe prior to the talk and purchase refreshments and lunch and enjoy it during the talk.

Online booking is advised but you can also turn up on the day and get a FREE ticket at box office

Location: Museum of Enfield, The Dugdale Centre, 39 London Road, Enfield EN2 6DS

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broomfield house memories wanted croppedbroomfield house memories wanted

The Broomfield House Trust and Enfield Museum Service have agreed to hold a joint exhibition, "Hidden Treasures: Revealing Broomfield House", at the Dugdale Centre in Enfield from 23 July 2018 until 6 January 2019.

The Broomfield House Trust will be using donations and a grant from the Enfield Society to fund the restoration and display of the Minerva panel of the Lanscroon Murals, which will be the centre piece of the display. We are awaiting formal permission from Enfield Counci,l who "own" the mural, and Historic England, who guard its listed status, before our chosen restorers, Arte Conservation, can move the sections to their studios in Faversham to begin their painstaking restoration.

We continue to seek donations to cover the costs of this whole exercise. Donations can easily made through BTMydonate on our websites on Facebook - "Broomfield House and the Lanscroon Murals" - and at

Stacey Bagdi is the energetic organise of the exhibition and she is appealing for items and memories connected with the park and house - see the poster.

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Karl Brown's Avatar
Karl Brown posted a reply #3640 21 Feb 2018 23:08
Being undoubtedly the most important artefacts from the park’s long history, I understand the curator is already considering how to best represent the handbill and witches bottles, key elements of the Palmers Scream, in the exhibition.

If it’s possible to obtain an early return of the scroll itself, currently undergoing testing at the British Museum of Curiosities, then hopefully that too – both sections - will form an integral part of this event.

(Readers not familiar with the witches’ bottles can watch a brief explanatory video, available on . Note that this will be one of the very few time since their discovery that the bottles will be available to be seen outside of their protective box.)
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Colin Younger posted a reply #3811 29 Apr 2018 18:19
The Trust has now been given planning permission (Listed Building Consent) for sections of the Lanscroon murals which make up the figure of Minerva to be removed from storage and taken to the restoration studios in Kent.

We are continuing to work with Stacey Bagdi of the museum service in selecting items and information for the exhibition opening on 28 July. Stacey is keen to hear recollections, or receive items which could be loaned or gifted for use in the display.
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Colin Younger posted a reply #3823 10 May 2018 16:55
Arte conservation have now collected the two large boxed sections of the Minerva panel and taken it to their studio in Faversham. There they will rejoin the two sections which were removed from Broomfield House for safe keeping after the 1984 fire. They will then repair surface damage and mount them on a display frame.

This restored sample of Gerard Lanscroon's 1726 mural will be the centrepiece of the joint Museum of Enfield/Broomfield House Trust exhibition "Hidden Treasures: Revealing Broomfield House and Park" opening in the Dugdale Centre on 28 July.

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Colin Younger posted a reply #3871 27 May 2018 11:17
In addition to asking for your memories, The Broomfield House Trust now seeks a new treasurer!

The current treasurer has updated and simplified our reporting procedures, but he is moving away and we need a replacement as soon as possible.

If anyone is interested in taking on this role and becoming a Trustee, please let us know at

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lets rebuilt broomfield houseAt its meeting on 18th October, Councillor Dinah Barry updated Enfield Council's Cabinet on the situation regarding the future of Broomfield House. Below we reproduce the relevant section of the draft minutes of the Cabinet meeting, along with a commentary by Colin Younger, Chair of the Broomfield House Trust.

Excerpt from draft minutes of Cabinet meeting on 18 October 2017


Councillor Dinah Barry (Associate Cabinet Member - Enfield West) gave a verbal update to Members regarding Broomfield House. An information sheet was tabled at the meeting for Members to note, as summarised below.


1. The background to the current situation, and the status of Broomfield House and its stable block which were both included within Historic England's Heritage at Risk Register. An integrated strategy was needed for the House and Stables.

2. Members were updated on the progress of the Project Board, which had been established in October 2014. A significant amount of work had been undertaken. These outputs included studies on heritage significance, structural feasibility, use options, costs and soft market testing.

3. Structural surveys of the building remains had shown that only 20-30% of the remains could be restored as it stands. The remaining 70% of the structure was unviable for the use for which it was intended. Any reconstruction of the House would therefore to a large extent be a replica rather than a restoration. All options would be examined. The existing covenant which restricted trade or business raised the risks around the provision of any future income generating use. The Heritage Lottery Fund feedback was that they still had issues around the funding gap and how the proposed end-uses would meet their requirement for very secure long term income generation and sustainable business viability.

4. In the coming months officers would undertake the further work which was required by Historic England, in accordance with government guidance (the National Planning Policy Guidance), on further testing of options. It was not possible to consult local people on the future of Broomfield House until a limited range of options or a preferred scheme had been identified. This could only be evolved by fully testing viability through the market. Officers would undertake a marketing procedure to seek expressions of interest from a commercial partner (a process which would take 9-12 months).

5. Officers would continue to work with the community on the alternative options and continue to liaise with the Heritage Lottery Fund.

6. That a report would be brought to a future Cabinet meeting for a decision on the way ahead. The Council would continue to work with the community to deliver a timely resolution.

7. In response to a question raised by Councillor Anderson, Councillor Barry outlined in more detail the results of the structural surveys. Whilst the majority of the brickwork could be retained and repaired, the majority of the building was of timber framed construction that was not capable of repair and retention. A drone survey had recently been carried out and the resulting video footage would be placed on the Council's website. This would aid understanding of the building construction and the limited fabric which remained. It was noted that no more than 20-30% of the historic fabric of the building remained.


Commentary by Colin Younger, Chair of the Broomfield House Trust

The Trust’s position is as set out in our registered objectives; in short to restore, preserve and protect Broomfield House and stableyard for public benefit. Essentially this matches the mission statement for the Broomfield House Partnership Board which Councillor Barry now chairs.

Unfortunately there is a tendency to focus on the problems facing Broomfield House, and to forget the potentially positive aspects. To begin with, as shown by structural engineers’ reports in 2014 and 2017, and the Conservation Management Plan produced in 2016, there has been no recent significant deterioration to the structure. Notwithstanding the drone survey, the extent of the standing structure is no less than it has been for many years. Also the risks to trespassers (who would have to breach high hoarding and ignore clear warning notices to access the site), is no different to what it has been for many years.

The report makes no mention of the significant elements of Broomfield House (the murals and the main staircase) in store and capable of restoration and re-instatement in a rebuilt structure. Where features are incomplete, there is often enough original material to allow replicas to be made where this is necessary to the historical context. However, in line with many reconstructions of listed buildings, it has always been accepted that any reconstruction would as far as possible use modern materials and methods. In addition to cost reduction this would allow modern services and catering facilities to be installed. Commercial use such as a café/restaurant, or artist’s work spaces, would be part of our vision and an essential element in raising finance, but the balance of advantage needs careful thought.

The importance of Broomfield House for the park and the potential benefits of a rebuilt House for the park and the community have been set out in many studies. Palmers Green is a neglected area as regards the provision of community facilities; we have always promoted Broomfield House and stableyard as a place where the changing community could come together. New build accommodation along the North Circular corridor has not been matched by community facilities. The public’s general attitude shown in the Council--commissioned opinion survey by the PPS Group in November 2015 showed clear support for community hub/heritage, arts and cultural purposes. Our experience at our stall during Palmers Green Festival in September didn’t suggest things had changed. Perhaps one might hope that Councillors would have this in mind as next year’s elections approach.

So far as we know there are a number of options for dealing with the restrictive covenants. We have not previously understood this to be an insuperable issue, particularly if the Council were to approach this with a positive problem-solving attitude.

It is the Trust’s feeling that the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) could have been more helpful in finding creative ways around funding problems – which are very real. We have not been given any clear reporting of their current views, but have asked for a meeting with them to be arranged. There are a number of ways in which this key listed building could be saved, including through partial or staged restoration and reconstruction. If negative attitudes could be reined in, an approach to market might throw up some fresh ideas, so we support this proposal.

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The Broomfield House Trust has launched a crowdfunding campaign aimed at raising £10,000 to be used to restore a section of the Lanscroon murals that were salvaged from Broomfield House after the first fire in 1984.

Help bring Minerva to life!

let's rebuild broomfield houseBroomfield House is a beautiful Grade II* listed 16th century building, the centrepiece of Broomfield Park in Palmers Green. It was badly damaged by fire some 20 years ago. It remains held up by scaffolding and awaits restoration. This is now a matter of urgency.

Some of the most notable historical features of the house include the Baroque murals painted by the Flemish artist Gerard Lanscroon in 1726. Lanscroon was one of the leading mural painters in his time. He also worked on murals at Windsor Palace, Hampton Court, Powis Castle and at Arnos Grove.

fragment of broomfield house muralMinerva's face revealed by trial removal of protective coating

The murals were salvaged and are now stored in pieces. The Broomfield House Trust wishes to fund a restoration of parts of the murals and mount an exhibition at the Dugdale Centre in 2018, where visitors will enjoy a glimpse of these beautiful works of art and learn more about the history of Broomfield House and the Park.

We hope the exhibition will help to ignite further interest in Broomfield House and our aim of raising funds to restore it as a heritage and learning centre for the community.


lanscroon mural restorers arte conservationTom Organ, Matt Organ and Rita Radovanovich of Arte Conservation with the packing cases where the mural remains are stored

***Arte Conservation has been working on the mural to test the removal of protective material. Our image shows the head of Minerva, the Roman goddess of poetry, medicine, wisdom and the arts – seeing the light for the first time in over 30 years. Broomfield House Trust would use the £10,000 funds raised to fully restore this section of the mural dedicated to Minerva to its former glory.***

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Colin Younger posted a reply #3424 12 Dec 2017 19:25
WE’RE DELIGHTED that we have now arranged with HMRC to get GIFT AID status for donations made by individuals to The Broomfield House Trust. This adds 25p to every £ donated. Surely this is too good an offer to miss!

The on-line donation form set up by BT My Donate (who doesn’t charge) now includes provision for donors to state that the wish to make use of this. In addition, higher rate tax payers can set their donation against tax payable when completing their tax return. According to the HMRC website, on a £100 donation a 40% tax payer can currently claim back £25. A generous donor could then Gift Aid the £25!

If you want to donate, or even donate again, please consider using a debit card since credit card companies charge a higher handling fee.

If you have already donated and wish to allow us to claim Gift Aid in retrospect, contact us at and we will send you a form to complete.

Donate at:-

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Colin Younger, Chair of the Broomfield House Trust, updates us on the progress of efforts to restore the House.

Broomfield House Trust members met with Enfield Council officers on 23 August to discuss thinking on a way ahead on the reconstruction of the House and stableyard.  This follows structural engineers' re-examination of the House's remains and further cost estimates for potential work.

broomfield house logo

On behalf of the Broomfield House Trust

The Art of Gerard Lanscroon

with ML Banting


Saturday 16th September, 2.30pm
Southgate Beaumont

 section of lanscroon mural

Who was Gerard Lanscroon?

Why are there murals on the staircases of Southgate Beaumont and Broomfield House?

What do the paintings say about early 18th century society?

Come on a Baroque adventure as we explore the life and art of the itinerant Flemish artist Gerard Lanscroon, his teacher Antonio Verrio and the fashion for wall paintings in the great houses of Britain.

Space is limited so please RSVP by email to:

There's more life in the standing structure than might be thought.  80-90 per cent of the masonry is capable of being refurbished and retained, though only 25-30 per cent of the timber can be. Questions remain about how much of the footprint can be reconstructed, to what degree of fitting out, and at what cost. In addition there are issues over the stableyard and whether it should or could be exploited as enabling development or stand on its own.

Taking in to account advice from Historic England, the next step will probably be for Enfield Council to carry out an open market exercise seeking "expressions of interest" in the work needed to rebuild Broomfield House and stableyard.  The form of this approach is still under consideration and the Trust expects to be able to comment on it before too long. This will then be discussed at the next Broomfield House Partnership Board in October under its new chair, Councillor Dinah Barry, who replaces Bambos Charalambous MP. This exercise, complying with public tendering rules, could take up to six months to complete.  Following a report to the Cabinet in October, there could be a press release on the Council position.

After this, but possibly delayed by next year's council elections on 3 May, the resulting options will the subject of public consultation.  English Heritage has also recommended that the Council carry out a new community engagement exercise.  The last one was in November 2015, and showed strong support for community/heritage use but little for residential development or a "preserved ruin". However the feeling is that the profile of those who responded was not fully representative. So more work is underway on how a wider response might be generated.

The Murals

Information on the latest state of play on the Lanscroon murals project can be found on the Broomfield House & the Lanscroon Murals Facebook page and the Broomfield House Trust website. The Trust is awaiting the report from Arte Conservation which will be a key to drafting any application for support  from the Heritage Lottery Fund. We are still seeking help in generating material for schools using the House and murals to tie in with Key Stage targets.

The Lanscroon Murals Lecture

In support of the mural restoration project, Dr Mark Banting will be giving a talk on the work of Gerard Lanscroon, the murals from Broomfield House, and those which still adorn the entrance hall of Southgate Beaumont. This will be at 2.30 on Saturday 16 September at Southgate Beaumont (15 Cannon Hill, Arnos Grove, London N14 7DJ), whose permission to hold this event is much appreciated. Since space is limited, those wishing to attend should email the Trust at .

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Colin Younger posted a reply #3192 19 Sep 2017 00:38
The lecture by Dr Mark Banting on the Lanscroon murals was attended by well over 50 people - we needed extra chairs! Mark is always an excellent lecturer and his introduction of the themes of changing society and the theatricality of the combination of the murals and the staircase was new to me. It forces a new way of looking at the "installation art" of its day.

Thanks to Mark, to Adrian Day for these photos of the Southgate Beaumont, and to Southgate Beaumont and staff for the venue. So let's get on with restoring the Broomfield House version!

We now have an estimate for the trial restoration of a mural panel, that of the head and body of Minerva, and preparation for its display framework. We are looking for contributions towards the £10,000 which this will cost

See our Facebook page “Broomfield House and the Lanscroon Murals” for more. There is a button on this for contributions!

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fragment of broomfield house lanscroon mural 1Minerva's face revealed by trial removal of protective coatingSpecialists have begun trial restoration of some sections of the Lanscroon murals that once adorned the staircase in Broomfield House.  If the trials are successful, it is hoped to exhibit sections of the murals at the Dugdale Centre next year.

lanscroon mural restorersTom Organ, Matt Organ and Rita Radovanovich of Arte Conservation with the packing cases where the mural remains are storedConservators working for Arte Conservation Ltd started work on small fragments of the murals on Tuesday.  Their first task is to determine the best method of removing the protective coating from the artworks without causing damage - the coating was put in place at the time the murals were removed from the house. They need to identify the best solvents for this purpose, then assess how long it might take to repair and restore larger sections.

A photograph posted to the Broomfield House and the Lanscroon Murals Facebook page shows the first results of their work:  the coating has been stripped away to reveal the face of Minerva from a fragment of mural from the east wall of the entrance wall.

The Broomfield House Trust is funding this initial step, after which the Trust plans to seek further finance from the Heritage Lottery Fund. However, the longer term future of the remains of Broomfield Park's centrepiece house remains unclear. Whether or not it will be rebuilt, and if so in what form and where the money for the rebuilding will come from, all continue to be "known unknowns".  However, the situation should become clearer before long, as council officers are due to present a report to Enfield's cabinet this autumn.  More immediately, the Broomfield House Trust will be meeting the officers next week to discuss their thinking about Broomfield House.

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The Broomfield House Trust is hoping to work with local artists, teachers and schoolchildren on a project that would promote a lifelong love of art and learning while at the same time contributing to the Trust's multipronged efforts to raise funds to restore Broomfield House.

Lanscroon Murals in Broomfield HouseThe Lanscroon Murals in Broomfield House before the fires. The staircase at the Beaumont Care Home in Southgate also has murals by the same artistThe project would be be run along similar lines to Take One Picture, the annual countrywide scheme run by the National Gallery.  Like the national scheme, it would focus on a particular work of art.  For Take One Picture, the work chosen for 2017 was Rubens' A Roman Triumph;  in the case of Broomfield House, the work of art would be the spectacular murals that once adorned the chief staircase.

The murals were painted in 1726 by the Flemish artist Gerard Lanscroon. Fortunately, after the 1984 fire it proved possible to salvage large portions of the murals and store them safely in purpose-built crates.  Three years ago the crates were opened and their contents examined.  Conservation experts declared that they were in remarkably good condition, much to the relief of members of the Broomfield House Trust, the organisation that was set up with the aim of working with Enfield Council, the Heritage Lottery Fund, conservation bodies and others in the hope of eventually restoring the House.

A trial restoration of three sections of the murals is being carried out by Arte Conservation Ltd and it is hoped to put them on display at the Dugdale Centre in May 2018 as part of an exhibition about Broomfield House and the restoration project.

Let's Rebuild Broomfield HouseCan you help? We're looking for teachers and artists interested in developing a project with us and local schools

Launched in 1995, Take One Picture is the National Gallery’s countrywide scheme for primary schools which aims to inspire a lifelong love of art and learning by promoting the role of visual arts within education.

The scheme shows how schools can be involved in interpreting and developing art work and to explore techniques and ideas for using the visual arts as a resource for curriculum-based learning.

The Broomfield House Trust is very interested in encouraging and supporting the creation of a local programme along these lines with teachers or artists in connection with the Lanscroon Murals. We welcome any enquiries and interest.

Please feel free to get in touch with us at to discuss this. Please feel free to share this with anyone who may be interested.

We have a Facebook page, “Broomfield House and the Lanscroon Murals” and a more general website at, where there is more information.

The Broomfield House Trust is pursuing a number of initiatives aimed at obtaining funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund and from other sponsors, as well as from the general public.  In addition to the Dugdale exhibition, they include creating an online repository of documentary and pictorial resources recording the history of the House and Park, as well as an oral history drawing on local people's memories of the House before the fires.

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let's rebuild broomfield houseThe Broomfield House Trust, a registered charity and private limited company, is looking for a new volunteer treasurer, who would also become a Trustee.

The Treasurer makes the normal returns to the Charity Commission and Companies House; however, a new project will involve some additional tasks. The Trust is preparing a bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund to create a digital history of the House and carry out a trial restoration of sections of the Lanscroon Murals. The HLF will want us to account for spending on this project.

If you are interested in Broomfield House and Park, and have the time and skills to help with this project, please contact us through .

More information is available about the history project on our website at

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broomfield house thumbnailEnfield Council has just posted on its website a comprehensive set of documents prepared for the Broomfield House Partnership Boards’ [1] consideration of the future of the House [2] and Stableyard. These can be read as they stand, but in order to better understand these papers, it might be helpful to summarise how we got here.

broomfield house conservation management plan coverAs well as the House, the Conservation Management Plan considers the Stables and the Park as a wholeRecent Plans

A number of earlier plans proposed by Enfield and/or community groups have for one reason or another not succeeded. The most recent plan was the 2012 joint Council-Broomfield House Trust/Friends of Broomfield Park working group bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for the rebuilding of the House. Regrettably, the HLF told us in 2013 that were unable to agree to provide the almost £5m bid on a basis that this was a traditional Heritage project, which was risky given the extent of the damage and, in practice, was not in their view of national significance warranting a £5m grant.

Heritage Enterprise Programme

Given this, Enfield Council in conjunction with Historic England and the HLF determined that an approach to the HLF under its relatively new Heritage Enterprise Programme should be explored for both the House and stableyard (an almost equal priority for the Trust). Any scheme to rebuild and reopen Broomfield House would have to raise the capital costs and cover future running costs. The Enterprise Programme is designed for properties such as Broomfield House where traditional heritage fund raising has not succeeded, and under which enabling commercial involvement has to be secured before the HLF bid is made. Commercial involvement in such a heritage property would normally be unacceptable in planning terms, but for the fact that it brings sufficient public benefits which could not otherwise be achieved. The key element is usually securing the long-term future of the asset. The HLF contribution is intended to cover what is described as the “conservation deficit”, which is defined as the amount by which the cost of repair exceeds its market value on completion.

This latest approach starts with the creation of a Conservation Management Plan (CMP). This is the key step recommended by Historic England.

The purpose of the CMP is to provide a comprehensive and holistic assessment of the significance of the House, Stables and Park in order to provide information on the relative value or significance of the component parts of the heritage assets. It is intended to provide the basis of a long term maintenance and management strategy for the Park. It is possible that in the future a bid for funds to improve the Park and restore the baroque water gardens might be made under the Parks for People programme.

The second element is composed of the various Options Appraisal reports, intended to develop alternative viable future uses of the House and Stable Block.

The Long List Options

The Long List Options Appraisal draws on the CMP, on the outcome of the public consultation which ran to November 2015, on the Market analysis and on the Options Appraisal (see below). It considers and evaluates a wide variety of options, concluding that the best fit is that of an arts-based community use. This could involve artist studio and workshop space in the stableyard, and possibly in the house, with parts of the House and stables open periodically for public viewing, with some rooms in the House open more regularly or available for public hire, displays etc.

Attached to the Long List are sketches showing how much of the House could be new-build.

The January 2016 Update report

The January 2016 Update Report might better be identified as an interim report, and is perhaps less informative than:

The Report on Options

This Report on Options (actually dated April 2016) considers the objectives and finance of the project and the risks to it. The objectives are set as Restoration, Public Access and Viability. It then focuses on the reduced list of options and shows how they fit with the objectives. The paper goes on to compare the financial profiles of each option. It includes a baseline business model (including a café, rentable space and a degree of heritage interpretation), capital costs, comparative discounted cash flows for the various models, and the runs a risk assessment on them.

It concludes (albeit with a number of caveats) that restoration and part re-build of the House and artist’s studios in the stablyard as enabling development are the preferred solutions.

This paper takes into account the comprehensive Market Context Analysis, which puts Broomfield House in a wider context and develops the concept of the growing potential for creative studio workshop places which it assesses presents an opportunity to capitalise and gain a share of this market.

Finally, the Cost Model covers in detail the refurbishment/rebuild costs for Broomfield House, the stableyard buildings and, four options for their use [3], the demolition of the row of 1960’s houses in the stableyard and should it come to it, for the demolition of Broomfield House itself.

"Soft Marketing"

Using this information, the next steps are for Enfield to beginning informal "soft marketing", seeking expressions of interest from potential commercial partners. Looking further ahead, Enfield and the existing Broomfield House Trust and Friends of Broomfield Park are planning a seminar with Historic England and the Architectural Heritage Fund on a potential management trust for a restored House and Stableyard. It is likely that this seminar, which will be by invitation from LBE will look to a wider participation.

In spite of all this work, unless funding from a commercial partner or partners and further grants from the HLF and others can be agreed, demolition of the House remains a possibility.

Colin Younger
Chair, The Broomfield House Trust


  1. The remit of the Partnership Board is to identify and deliver restoration of Broomfield House, Stable Block and Park to provide maximum access whilst ensuring the building has a viable use for the future. 
  2. For those not familiar with the status of Broomfield House it is a II* listed building on the Historic England list of Heritage at Risk. Historic England (represented on the Board) have advised on the strategy which the Board has been following.
  3. Art Studios, Performance art space, Commercial use/offices, and Residential use.
The remit of the Partnership Board is to identify and deliver restoration of Broomfield House, Stable Block and Park to provide maximum access whilst ensuring the building has a viable use for the future. 
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Colin Younger posted a reply #2256 05 Sep 2016 11:14
The LBE website now includes the Gazetteer annex to the Conservation Management Plan. This 277 page paper covers every know feature in the Park, including ones which only the faintest signs now exist and which would need further research, including by archaeologists, to understand. There are short notes on description,background, significance and any management action suggested for each item, photographs and location maps. See:
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Colin Younger posted a reply #2257 05 Sep 2016 12:45
Enfield is arranging a seminar to explore future governance/management arrangements for Broomfield House and stableyard should the rebuilding programme go ahead. This is what LBE have said. Please note the section I have marked in bold.

Historic England and Architectural Heritage Fund have indicated the afternoon of 19th October to provide a governance workshop.
We will be requiring attendees to register for the event, which will enable us to retain some control and ensure that the event is restricted to the Trust / Friends and others with genuine skills and commitment to offer the project.
We need to know likely numbers to arrange a suitable venue.

Once I receive confirmation of who is to definitely attend I’ll build an attendance list and book a venue.

Could anyone with the time, skills and interest in the future arrangements, who would like to attend let me know at . It might help LBE if those who want to attend could briefly indicate relevant skills/background.

Colin Younger
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Colin Younger posted a reply #2266 09 Sep 2016 19:43
Enfield has now posted details of the Governance workshop at:

The posting includes the following:-

Community partners have a vital role to play in steering the Broomfield House project. We will be holding a community capacity building Governance Workshop
in October 2016. This workshop will be delivered by officers from Historic England, the Architectural Heritage Fund and Enfield Council.
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Colin Younger posted a reply #2347 22 Oct 2016 11:07
The seminar on future governance arrangements for a reopened Broomfield House held on 19 October provided a great deal of information and advice about the sort of formal arrangements and the range of skills and expertise which might be needed. The Partnership Board will need to consider how to take this forward, but there would clearly be a huge role for volunteers to join any new management trust.
More immediately, the Broomfield House Trust has a collection box in Palmers Green Waitrose under the Community Matters scheme. This is aimed at gaining support for our plan to fund a trial restoration of sections of the Lanscroon Mural which used to grace the main hall and stairs. If you shop there and want to support this initiative please drop your green tokens in to our collection box.
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Chrystalla Georgiou posted a reply #2474 01 Dec 2016 17:48
The potential restoration of Broomfield House is dragging on snail slow. Its hindrance for restoration could be due to the way ideas are presented to those that could financially help raise Broomfield House from the ashes into a very rewarding and profitable property.

In reality, Broomfield's House has huge potential both to the public and financially for Palmers Green but it seems few have the vision and insight to see it.

The property is in the borough of Enfield just like Capel Manor and Forty Hall but with far better travel links because luckily, there is ideally the Palmers Green Railway Station on Broomfield House doorstep, therefore Enfield Council should try and not be reluctant in getting involve by engaging with the Friends of Broomfield Park to help link Broomfield House with the other two mention properties to providing a more or less similar programmes which will include those good ideas proposed by The Friends of Broomfield House.

Broomfield House will entice people to visit and under take courses who would never travel to Forty Hall or Capel Manor for their courses and events. With acknowledge certificates such as City and Guides for various specialized Arts and Crafts courses and acknowledged certificate Horticultural Courses such as Flower Arranging, landscaping. A cinema for youngest for mid morning viewing on the Weekends will mean the cafeteria always be full.

I certainly love the exciting ideas proposed for the Stable Yards which include an Art/Craft Studios and Kitchen Garden.

Centrally, Broomfield House has the potential to become popular and notable. The public love anything to with Arts and Crafts of quality, they always draw in the crowds and Palmers Green will inevitably become a fashionable artistic area.

I wonder for the sake of progress should the name of Broomfield House be extended to characterise its new fashion potential ? For example Broomfield House of Specialized Course and Events, a name is said to hold much value and promise.

Personally, it shocking that Broomfield House has remained in its current state with hope of it restoration each year never to materialize. Enfield Council must be generating a lot of revenue in the borough to allow this house to remain in it current burned out shell, because one day Broomfield House will be big business and people will wonder why it took so long to restore.
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Catharine Perry posted a reply #2486 08 Dec 2016 11:02
This may make me no friends in Palmers Green, but I think one option for Broomfield House would be to knock it down and replace it with a community centre designed for that purpose. We can't keep everything from the past! And what about accessibility? I doubt it's designed for wheelchairs, lifts would have to be put in. "Surviving fragments of 16th century fabric, ... the stair hall and [being] the focal point of a largely intact Baroque and earlier landscape", may not be enough to justify restoration, and a spectacular modern building fit for purpose might in fact be cheaper. The sad scaffolded building has been there for so long that a whizzy bright modern building would soon find a place in people's affections.
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Garry Humphreys posted a reply #2488 08 Dec 2016 18:14
I don't agree with you, but I know exactly what you mean! The disgrace of Broomfield House has been the Council's foot dragging over a period of more than 20 years. When the fires occurred (and I bet they weren't accidental!) the insurance money should have been spent on restoring the building immediately rather than squandering it on years of so-called 'security' provision as the building itself fell into further decay. The whole thing could have been sorted quickly and (certainly at today's prices) relatively cheaply with the building adding lustre to the park and providing an income for the Council. But the opportunist Philistines on the Council had other priorities (largely short term) , often contributing to the downgrading of the streetscape. Have they learned any lessons? Not if the Green Dragon debacle is anything to go by ...
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Colin Younger posted a reply #2489 09 Dec 2016 15:50
At the risk of repeating materiel already on the PGC website but for ease of reference can I respond to the recent postings. I agree with many of the points about how sad the situation is. However, we are where we are, and the trick is not to become defeated by past failures, but to focus on the potential which a restored House and stableyard would offer.

Broomfield House and the stable yard are Listed buildings and legally every avenue has to be explored before any permission to demolish them could be sought. Should this be the (very regrettable) outcome, I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for a whizzy new building suited for a listed park setting to be funded and built or there to be any agreement on what it should look like!.

However on the positive side, many locals see the situation not as a problem but as an opportunity to restore the historic core of the listed park, and this was the overwhelming response to last year’s public consultation.

There is only one source for the main restoration funding which is needed, and this is the Heritage Lottery Fund. If it is to be persuaded to help fund restoration, the process has to be laid out logically, deal with issues of heritage, environment, educational and public benefit, and demonstrate a financial programme for both the restoration and longer term financial viability.

The Broomfield House Partnership Board (on which both the Broomfield House Trust and the Friends of Broomfield Park sit) has been following the steps to achieve this. These are as recommended by Historic England based on their experience in similar situations. Unfortunately all this takes time but the results so far can be seen at-

One option looked at for Broomfield House would include a new section within the existing footprint with current standards for access and which would house modern services. Add a good quality café/restaurant, restored hall and stairs and elements of the restored Lanscroon murals, rooms for hire/rent, with a digital history of the House and park accessible on site and remotely, and I think that the potential is clear, even before the stableyard is taken in to account.

Some may be convinced that “nothing can be done”. Well, fine, each to his/her own, but please don’t try to prevent those who haven’t given up from continuing to try. Be positive - you'll feel better!

Finding the finance isn’t easy, but we haven’t given up.

Colin Younger, Broomfield House Trust Chair

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Broomfield House - before and after proposed renovation

The Broomfield House Trust will holding its Annual General Meeting at 7.30pm on Tuesday 5th April. 

The venue is the Beatrice Newton Room at the Fox Lane United Reformed Church complex​.  Entrance is via the Burford Centre entrance in Burford Gardens.

Much has happened in the past year with regard to the future of this historical property, so there will a lot to discuss - but the meeting can only last two hours!

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broomfield house small as ruinStarting this week, local people will be asked by Enfield Council to give their views about what should be done with the fire-damaged remains of Broomfield House.  The consultation - oneline and by post - will also ask about options for the future of the historic Stableyard and of Broomfield Park as a whole.

Broomfield House before and after

This Sunday's Palmers Green Festival will provide an opportunity to find out more about the house and future options.  Enfield Council will have a stall where you'll be able to pick up hard copies of the questionnaire and essential background material.  It’s hoped that one of the consultants will be available to assist with answering enquiries and help explain the Conservation Management Plan (see below) and how the next step, the Options Appraisal for the future, will work.

Also at the Festival will be representatives of the Broomfield House Trust, who will be happy to give the Trust's own perspective on the way ahead. The Trust considers that it’s vital that there is a positive response to the questionnaire if the Park is to have a future in which the views of the local community are taken in to account.

The online consultation can be found at

The Council summarises the situation as follows:

Broomfield House and its stable block are buildings of architectural and historic interest, listed by Historic England at Grade II*. The house, which dates from the 16th century, was badly damaged by a series of fires and would cost approximately £6million to fully restore. The stable block and surrounding stable yard is also now in need of repair. Both buildings would need a viable new use. Considering the current pressures on local government funding and competing priorities, the Council is not in a financial position to pay for the rebuilding and running costs from Council money, external funding would be needed.

The Council is working with The Broomfield House Trust, the Friends of Broomfield Park, Historic England and the Heritage Lottery Fund to look at options for the future of Broomfield House and stable block. We have commissioned a report from independent architects to explore possible options for the future of the house and stable block.

The consultations begins by asking people to choose between some main options for the House and Stableyard:

  • Community Hub
  • Heritage, arts and cultural destination
  • Commercial development
  • Residential development
  • Make safe and retain as a ruin
  • Demolish
  • Other

It then asks questions about ways of achieving the preferred outcome.

The report referred to above by the Council is the Conservation Management Plan for Broomfield House and Park, which was commissioned by the Council on the recommendation of Historic England (formerly known as English Heritage).  An executive summary ("Key Findings") has now been published and is available on the Enfield Council website.  The Broomfield House Trust recommends that people read this before responding to the consultation, as it sets out the key issues, briefly describes the current situation, and lists possible options for the future.

Links to consultation documents

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Colin Younger posted a reply #2012 14 Feb 2016 21:05
The report analysing the results of the Phase 1 public consultation was prepared by consultants PPS.

72 per cent of respondents supported the idea of a community hub or a heritage, arts and cultural centre. Only 17 per cent wanted to see the house used for other things and 6 per cent favoured demolition.

Asked to rate their degree of support for four funding options, 90 per cent favoured the council seeking grants to fund restoration, and 74 per cent favoured the council at least part funding it. Almost 60 per cent of respondents supported the idea of working with a business partner / commercial interests to fund or part-fund the restoration and future running costs and just over 50 per cent agreed that the potential of the stable yard should be investigated. However, these latter two were, not surprisingly, more controversial with 27 percent disagreeing.

A draft ‘long list’ of options is being compiled by consultants Donald Insall Associates. This will include various possible uses for the House and Stable Block which have emerged from an examination of the significance of the site set out in a (still draft) Conservation Management Plan, uses suggested by a significant number of those responding to the public consultation, and those which emerged as a result of the consultants' market analysis. Viable options will be subject to the Phase 2 public consultation in the spring / summer 2016.
After the consultation has been completed a preferred option will be chosen later in 2016.

Although the focus of all this activity is the House and Stableyard, the Conservation Management Plan sets out possible future work on the wider park, in particular on a possible restoration of the Baroque water garden.

Works to make good the scaffold, until the future of the House can be decided, were completed during January 2016, with the help of a grant from Historic England.

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Efforts are continuing to obtain the funds needed to restore Broomfield House.  In preparation for a probable public consultation exercise later in the year, a model of the house dating from 1951 (the model, that is - the house is rather older!) is to go on show.  It is hoped that a Conservation Management Plan for the whole of Broomfield Park, currently in development, will enable the Broomfield House Trust and Enfield Council to make a second, successful, bid for Heritage Lottery Fund support.

Below, Colin Younger of the Broomfield House Trust, provides an update.  For more detail, see the Restoring Broomfield House website.

Broomfield House Update

The Broomfield House Trustees have reached agreement with the Enfield Museum Service on the repair and refurbishment of a model of Broomfield House as it was before it came in to the ownership of the Southgate Urban District Council in 1903. The model was made in 1951 by a local resident, Geoffrey Dyer. It was on show in Broomfield House, but since the fire in 1984 it has been in store, during which time it has deteriorated a little and needs some TLC. The repairs and refurbishment will be carried out by another local resident, Ralph Hutchings. Among other things the model helps illustrate better than simple line drawings how the outward form of the House developed over its long existence.

broomfield house model 2broomfield house model 1


Later this summer, subject to the agreement of the Broomfield House Partnership Board, consultants employed by Enfield Council will carry out a public consultation programme on the future of Broomfield House and Stableyard. Partly to help inform the exercise the Trustees are looking for a variety of suitable local display sites where the model, together with explanatory material, will be seen by as many residents as possible.

This is all in the wider context of a Conservation Management Plan for the whole of Broomfield Park, now nearing completion, which will provide the strategic plan needed to give a framework to investment, essential for Lottery funding purposes. Following completion of the CMP, work will commence in earnest on developing an Options Appraisal. The Trustees and Friends of Broomfield Park who sit in the Partnership Board (which is chaired by Palmers Green Councillor Bambos Charalambous) will continue to press to maximise community use of the House and Stableyard.

Colin Younger
The Broomfield House Trust


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Colin Younger posted a reply #1508 25 Aug 2015 19:39
After being refurbished by Ralph Hutchings (who has also made a special wheeled display table) the model is now on show in Scrivens Opticians, Green Lanes, where it will be until 4 September. It will then be removed, to be available for the PG Festival on 6 September. After this it will be transferred to Multiyork on Green Lanes, where it will remain until Friday 18 September. We are negotiating for it to be on display in the newly refurbished Palmers Green Library which reopens to the public on Monday 21 September.
We are grateful for the support we have had from Ralph, Scrivens, Multiyork and Connect Property Management where the model was on display previously.
As indicated above we intend to have a stall at the Palmers Green Festival where, depending on the weather, the model will be on display. Come along to see it and hear about the latest developments.
At the same event Enfield Council should be launching the public consultation on the future of the House and Stableyard and the wider park at their own stall.

The photographs show the model in the window of the Scrivens shop and the notice displayed with it.

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The Restoring Broomfield House website has published reports about the progress of the project to restore the house at the centre of Broomfield Park, which was seriously damaged by fires during the 1980s.

In May the Broomfield House Trust met English Heritage representatives, who recommended that a conservation management plan should be developed covering the entire park, followed by an options study that would investigate all possible ways forward, including having some degree of commercial involvement.  English Heritage emphasized that restoration of the Lanscroon murals was of key importance.

The Trust also met officers from Enfield Council and the fundraising expert employed by Enfield to obtain advice on how best to deal with the Heritage Lottery Fund, a possible commercial partner and other potential funding bodies.

At a meeting in June with Enfield Council leader Doug Taylor and a Heritage Lottery Fund representative, it was confirmed that the Council had commissioned condition surveys on the House and the murals and was preparing a conservation management plan for the park as a whole.  The key will be what the condition survey says about Broomfield House. The critical question is how much original material of heritage value remains.

To read more detailed reports of these meetings and to keep abreast of developments, visit the Restoring Broomfield House News page.

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After the fire at Broomfield House in 1984, parts of the interior fittings that could be salvaged were removed and put in store.  They included the striking murals on the staircase created by George Lanscroon.  Now, thirty years later, the crates have been opened and their contents inspected.  Colin Younger reports.

lanscroon muralsThe Lanscroon Murals: After the fire….long after the fire!

One of uncertainties about the scope and cost of the rebuilding of Broomfield House has been the condition of the mural panels and fragments.

Immediately after the 1984 fire salvage and emergency preservation work was undertaken, and the wall panels and ceiling fragments were removed and enclosed in purpose built, tailor-made crates. In our bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund a notional sum of £850,000 was allocated to murals, on the assumption that if we were successful in the Stage 1 bid, the HLF would allocate development funds part of which could be used to pay for the expert conservation work needed to refine this estimate.

lanscroon1Given the potential risk that examination of the murals without the appropriate conservation back up might result in inadvertent damage there has been reluctance to open the boxes.

On 25 February, as a result of an initiative by Ivor Evans, the material was examined in store by a team made up of Enfield’s Principal Heritage Officer Christine White; Stephen Paine, an expert restorer and Lanscroon enthusiast; Clair Brady, Building Inspector from English Heritage; Dr Robyn Pender, a Senior Architectural Conservator from the Building Conservation and Research Team, English Heritage; and Tracy Manning, a Consultant from the same team.

For the Trust this could have been a make or break occasion, since the murals are a key part of the listing status of Broomfield House. I’m pleased and relieved to report that the examination went well. All the experts were very confident that the material was in good condition and that the original salvage and preservation work had stood the test of time. The enthusiasm for both the relatively unappreciated Lanscroon and the rebuilding project was encouraging and bodes well for the expert and professional support the next bid to the HLF would attract.

lanscroon2We are now pressing LBE to commission a full condition survey be carried out to establish exactly what needs to be done and at what cost to reinstate the remaining elements of the murals in a rebuilt Broomfield House. This cost of this would be a matter of negotiation, but informally we understand that this would not be prohibitive. Whatever strategy is pursued over Broomfield House this will be an essential exercise.

We were able to see other material salvaged after the fire, including sections of the important staircase (the rails and barleycorn twist uprights) and various other decorative features from which replicas could be fashioned to replace missing elements.

All in all a good day!

Colin Younger
Deputy Chair, The Broomfield House Trust

For more photographs see the Restoring Broomfield House website.

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TV cameras were in Broomfield Park this week filming the ruins of Broomfield House and interviewing Councillor Del Goddard about the prospects for its future. The footage is intended for a programme which is expected to be shown on BBC next month. The following report is by Colin Younger of the Broomfield House Working Party.

Filming for the BBC-commissioned programme as a follow-up to the 2003 series “Restoration” series took place in Broomfield Park on 11th November. The two presenters, Ptolemy Dean and Marianne Suhr, were filmed in the Conservatory discussing their original visit to Broomfield House in 2003, and outside the ruin viewing its current state. It seems unlikely that they would be doing anything less than shaking their heads in sorrow! Indeed they may have been heard to use the words “national disgrace”, but how much will be aired remains to be seen.

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Basil Clarke posted a reply #148 23 Nov 2013 00:29
It now appears that the programme will go out on BBC1 at 7.30pm on Thursday 5th December
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Colin Younger posted a reply #154 07 Dec 2013 18:03
Those who watched the BBC1 programme “Restoring England’s Heritage” coverage of Broomfield House will be in no doubt about the need for significant investment to restore the House and re-open it to the community.

However, the programme showed what can be done with the right level of funding, even to a badly damaged and neglected building.

What wasn’t presented was the significant progress made by the Council and community groups working together to approach the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). The community group drafted the initial joint approach, and the Council funded the expert development of the actual bid which was made with very significant further inputs from the community group.

The programme didn’t have time to explain that the HLF specifically don’t want the Council to increase it’s contribution beyond the £1m which they have pledged; instead they want a wider range of contributors to become involved.

The estimated costs of rebuilding and restoring Broomfield House and reopening it to the public are £6.4m. The indications are that the HLF will look positively at a revised bid for £2m, and Enfield has pledged £1m. Working with Enfield, we are now looking for a donor or donors who will make significant pledges of the same order. We hope that the programme might have sparked the interest of such generous sources. In the meantime we do need contributions, of any size, to fund the continued work of the Broomfield House Trust.

More information can be found at .

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A new short film created by director Christine Lalla celebrates the history of Broomfield Park and its once magnificent centrepiece, Broomfield House.  Christine has superimposed film footage from sixty years ago and from earlier this year, plus still photography from as far back as the 1880s, over a soundtrack of local residents speaking about their memories of the Park and of the House in its heyday - of times when Olympic sprinters would train on the running track, when crowds of spectators watched tennis tournaments, when the first model boating lake in the country was opened, and when people swam in the top pond.

However, the film doesn't just look back - it presents a positive view of today's Broomfield Park and of the enhancements made by the Friends of Broomfield Park in the few years hat tthey have been active:  the reopened Conservatory, containing much more exotic plants than when it was run by the Council; beehives in the newly planted Community Orchard; the beautiful perennial borders alongside the ancient walls.  

The film ends with a shot of a young boy flying a kite, which we see taking off and moving off screen into the future - a future which will hopefully see Broomfield House restored to its former glory and serving the Palmers Green Community again.  And the main reason for Christine making the film was to help campaigners for the restoration of the House to secure more support for their project.

To watch the film online, visit the Friends of Broomfield Park website.  To find out about the House restoration project, visit Restoring Broomfield House and see the Broomfield House Restoration section of this website.


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Christine Lalla filming in Broomfield ConservatoryThe recorded memories of residents who visited Broomfield House before the disastrous fires in the 1980s will form a central part of a film which is currently being made about the House.  Film maker Christine Lalla has interviewed a number of local people about their reminiscences and the recordings will feature in the soundtrack of the film, which will be used to publicise the work of the Broomfield House Working Party to rebuild and reopen the historic building for community use.

With assistance from Jan Metcalf of the Enfield Library and Information Service, Christine has been able to film some of the stored artefacts which were once the pride of the displays in Broomfield House.  She has also shot footage of the recently created Broomfield Community Orchard and of the exotic plants in Broomfield Conservatory, which is now maintained and opened to the public by the Friends of Broomfield Park (the photograph shows Christine at work in the Conservatory).

Another important function of the film will be to help in fundraising, which will be crucial if the restoration is ever to go ahead.  Following the failure of last autumn's bid for Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) money (see this earlier report), the Broomfield House Working Party have decided that rather than attempting to devise a less expensive, but less satisfactory, restoration scheme, they should instead explore the scope for obtaining funding from major charitable and heritage sources, which could be used in conjunction with a bid for a reduced amount of funding from the HLF.

For a full history of the Broomfield House Working Party's project to restore the House, see the Latest News page of their website.


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On 3 March Enfield Council officers and representatives of the Broomfield House Working Group met Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) officers to discuss the reasons for the failure of their recent bid for funds to restore Broomfield House.  They were told that HLF officers had in fact recommended to the board of the National Heritage Memorial Fund that the bid for £4 million funding should pass the first round of decision-making.  In the event, faced with the task of evaluating ten new projects and with only £12 million to disburse, the board decided that the Broomfield House project - by far the most challenging of the projects under discussion - involved too much risk.  They did, however, note that the project had strong heritage and community attributes and were pleased to observe the close working relationship between the Counciil and the Working Group.

The Council and Working Group are now considering their next steps. Options include reducing the physical scale of the rebuilding (perhaps only restore the oldest part of the House), and/or seeking significant additional funding from non-HLF sources.  In addition, but also in an attempt to reduce risk identified by the HLF, further examination of the stored salvaged artefacts (staircase and mural remains) might be carried out.  This might make it possible to bid for a smaller amount of funding from the London HLF committee with a higher chance of success.

For detailed information about the project to restore Broomfield House, visit

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