About Connaught House (HT)
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Known today only as 34 West Street, the red brick Connaught House is an elegant, Georgian, Grade II listed building. It was built in 1769 by Mr Collis (although some archives say it was Mr Cottis), after a fortuitous lottery win. Those interested in architecture will appreciate its ‘Tuscan columns’ which frame the entrance. The iron railings at the front of the house were removed during World War II for the war effort and not replaced until about 2015.
Prominent on the west side of the square, it was once residence to a chain of successive solicitors, Vanderzee, Comport, Gregson and Halsey.
Its history seems to be vague as if forgotten by time, but documented memoirs have suggested it may have served as a workhouse and later became an annex of Rochford hospital, housing old people. It was used by the County Council as a Boys’ Home during the 1970’s until closure in the late 70’s. By 1988, it was being used as offices for Essex County Council. Today the building is again occupied by a firm of solicitors.
|Address:||34 West Street|
|Categories:||Point of Interest|