Developers in Cornwall have confirmed plans are afoot to convert notorious Bodmin Jail into an upmarket hotel. The ruined prison last housed the villains of Cornwall in 1927. It was the setting for more than 50 hangings during its 150-year service as a prison.
Although parts of the structures have been refurbished as a kind of educational museum, much of the jail is in an advanced state of decay. The project management team at Twelve Architects say the only thing which will be salvaged in its entirety are the one-metre thick outer walls.
Twelve Architects director Matt Cartwright explained the revamp of the Grade II structure presented a rare opportunity to preserve a heritage landmark for posterity. He carried on by saying the finished item would add a state-of-the-art hotel and tourism draw to Bodmin's assets.
He finished off by saying it would also create employment opportunities and give a welcome shot in the arm to the local economy. The architects have a difficult task in transforming the jail's grim exterior and interior into hospitable accommodation for 21st century travellers.
A sneak preview reveals the jail's cells will be enlarged to create 63 guest-rooms. New room walls will be built from brick and replacement floors from timber. A planned glass roof will brighten up the gloomy interior of the main structure while its current bat population will be rehoused in a purpose-built cave on the hotel's grounds.