Here is something I thought I had posted a couple of weeks ago but realised just now that it slipped through without a look in!
I visited the marvellous and recently refurbished Hadlow Tower a few days after it opened last month. The project has been completed by the Vivat Trust with the support of English Heritage and the Heritage Lottery Fund and sees this once derelict folly restored to beyond it’s original glory – I say beyond because whereas it was not built with any particular use in mind other than standing tall, now it has a real function and houses a pretty swanky three bedroom house on it’s lower five levels as well as a museum on the ground floor.
The original structures were designed in 1838 by the architect George Ledwell Taylor,for a client who had benefited from a substantial legacy and so had no need to work but did need to do something with his time. (the best kind of client, I should think!). Taylor was recently made redundant from the military, where he supervised a number of mundane projects and the Hadlow Tower was one of his early commissions as a private practitioner and he was obviously relishing the break from military architecture.
The full Wiki article is here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hadlow_Castle
The Vivat Trust is here: http://www.vivat-trust.org/properties.php?pid=121