Visited this site as was in the area. The main house is currently having work done. But still has all these abandoned cars around the back it's a real shame to see them just wasting away. Was a nice stroll around this place looking at the old jags so he's a bit of history from the web and some pics like I say not much to see off the mansion as it is stripped back to bare brick...
It's very difficult to dig up much information at all on this enigmatic building but we have discovered that it was built in 1869 by a Mr. Henry Hoyle Hardman. Henry was the son of George Hardman, a successful local businessman, who built Oakhill House - RIGHT - now the Rossendale Museum, in Rawtenstall. In view of the fact that Horncliffe House as it was then known was such a grand home, it is clear that Henry was also a successful businessman just like his father and in fact he owned Hardman Mill in Newhallhey which is just down in the valley and practically overlooked by the house. Henry died in 1888 but his wife Emily continued to live there until she died a few years later in 1896. The house passed to Annie Hardman (their daughter?) and she lived there until about 1903. The house and it's contents were then sold to a Mr. Roland Rawlinson who owned Myrtle Grove Mill in Waterfoot.
And now we have a huge gap with no idea who, what or when until we reach the 1960s!
At this time Lancashire County Council operated a care home for the elderly at the house until some time in the 1980s. Whilst it was a care home it was still known as Horncliffe House however when it was subsequently sold on in 1993 it was turned into a hotel and function venue, being re-named Horncliffe Mansions in the process. The operators at that time were Horncliffe Mansions Ltd. but the limited company was dissolved on 23rd. June, 2009 and the hotel closed. It appears now that it has passed back into private ownership once again and apparently the new owner, a property developer, is waiting to hear if he is to be granted permission to change the house back to a residential dwelling. An amusing anecdote was quoted in the local paper - apparently the owner started work in his youth as a florist's assistant and used to deliver flowers to the house when it was a care home. He always said at the time that he would love to own the house!
To the rear of the building there is a large, modern, single story function room big enough to seat several hundred people, and literature within the house itself confirms its use as a hotel quite unequivocally. Strangely though a document in the conservatory hinted at a prospective change of use to an old people's home but the document does NOT appear to be from the time period when the house actually functioned in that role! A planning application lodged with Rossendale Borough Council in 2008 states that the owner wished to convert the building from a hotel to a dwelling house, but that was during the period of ownership of the house by the hotel company, not by a private individual!
Abandoned then circa 2008/9 - just three years - so why on earth has the owner let it fall into such an appalling state of dereliction in such a short time?
A further enigma is the number of old Jaguar cars standing on the lane at the top of the grounds next to a very old, and boarded up, cottage and what appeared to be recently deployed flood precautions on that lane. This shows that someone is still going up to the house periodically.
So... after a morning of searching on t'internet all we have managed to find out is that Doctor David Bellamy - he of, "Gwapple me gwapenuts" fame - attended a protest meeting at the hotel back in 2004 when the local NIMBYs decided they didn't like the idea of the nearby moors being used as a site for those appalling windmill power stations. His presence clearly didn't do much good though because they just went ahead and built them anyway!
“As fresh as they get. Vegetables harvested from neighbouring fields and sold in a traditional road side market style. If you are travelling north, through the Kapiti Coast, pop in to sample their seasonal faire.”
Sang Sue Limited was a Chinese owned ‘acknowledged expert’ in the fruit and vegetable business. Although there are many other fruit and vegetable suppliers in the Kapiti coastal region, Sang Sue’s was known for its exceptionally fresh produce. In addition to the naturally grown products sold at the premises, Sue also supplied freshly baked bread from a small onsite craft bakery, because ‘good bread is one of the great pleasures of the table’, and beer, spirits, wine and cider sourced from boutique breweries around Kapiti. The cellar was described as being ‘well-stocked’, and the team of liquor sellers were very knowledgeable and passionate about their fully licenced goods. The small business boasted that it sold nearly 800 different subcategories in food and drink; some of these included fresh produce, dried and dehydrated fruits, mayonnaise and salads, delicatessens, cheese and cheese products, and food products machinery. Unfortunately, despite its success, back in 2015 the New Zealand Transport Agency acquired the business and closed it to make way for the MacKays to Peka Peka expressway; an 18 km four lane project that will cost the government $630 million.
Our Version of Events
Leaving Wellington early-ish, in an effort to reach a town called Bulls, we decided to have a quick break at a random fruit and vegetable suppliers that appeared to be abandoned. Hoping there might be some sort of home brew leftover we decided to investigate. Upon closer inspection it was obvious that the shop itself was fully stripped of anything interesting, so we decided to head around the back. We didn’t expect to find an awful lot around there, but experience has told us to always check the entire outside perimeter of a site; you never know what might be lurking.
Bypassing the guard dog warning sign, and a very large barbed wire fence and gate, we crawled through some extremely thorny bushes instead – because that seemed like the least painful option at the time. As we emerged through the sharp barbs, dead branches, and from beneath a large truck trailer that had become part of the bush, we were expecting to find an overgrown back garden; maybe, we surmised, it would have had an old algae-filled pond or something. We soon discovered our assumptions had been incorrect, however, as we found ourselves stood inside a bizarre vehicle graveyard of some sort. There was an array of vehicles: cars, quad-bikes, tractors, trucks and vans. It was quite clear that some had been there for a long time as the ground was steadily absorbing some, and foliage had consumed others; one, which was completely sealed, even had a bush growing inside it. Much more satisfied with our find at this point, we decided to hang around for twenty minutes to grab a few shots. After that, we left. Jobs a goodun’.
Explored with Nillskill and Bane.
Sang Sue's Place
1: Sang Sue Fruit and Vegetable Shop
2: A Quick Look Inside
3: Sue's House
4: Sue's Bed
5: Sue's Shed
6: Sue's Indoor Garden
7: Sue's Little Runaround Buggy
8: Sue's Other Indoor Garden
9: Sue's Storage Warehouse
10: Sue's Machinery
11: Sue's Till
Sue's Vehicle Collection
12: Fork Lifts
14: Standard Van
15: A Bigger Van
18: A Bigger Digger
19: Farm Equipment
20: Sue's Fleet 1
21: Sue's Fleet 2
22: Sue's Fleet 3
23: Sue's Fleet 4 and Car With a Bush Inside
24: The Beast
25: Sue Has a Dark Side
At last I get to go to visit a train graveyard! I went to Oakamoor for a look round but even the rails have been taken away from there and scrapped.
(non-HD people should press the back button and look at some drains )
Anyway, just before it was dark I managed to get pictures from another location I'd seen on Google Maps. I couldn't get up onto all of the carriages because of a bad elbow at the moment I'm surprised it hasn't been sold off for scrap. It was nice to go inside a proper old fashioned passenger carriage which hadn't been vandalized in any way.
First some general shots from walking around......
and my favourite carriage......