5 Converted Follies in the UK

Britain has its share of "follies," or architectural structures that were built for vanity, a lark, or to show off one's wealth. As properties changed hands, they fell into disuse because they weren't suited for any practical purpose. But some of these buildings have been saved by the work of the Landmark Trust, which took responsibility and made them sound enough for an eccentric vacation stay, if nothing else. Shown here is Culloden Tower in North Yorkshire.

Built around 1746 to commemorate “Butcher” Cumberland’s victory over Bonnie Prince Charlie at the Battle of Culloden, Culloden Tower arguably has more room than many converted follies, but it’s original purpose was still primarily ornamental. Designed by architect Daniel Garrett and originally called the Cumberland Temple, the former folly had fallen into disrepair by the 1980s. Now faithfully restored by the Landmark Trust, it’s the perfect holiday retreat near Richmond on the edge of the beautiful Yorkshire Dales.

Read about five "follies" saved by the Landmark Trust that are now available to rent at Urban Ghosts. Three of them are towers, plus a temple that was later used as a cattle barn, and a pineapple-shaped home.

(Image credit: Paul Brooker)


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