Plans could see restaurant and fishing lake on former Horsham District church retreat

A former church retreat near the A272 is to be converted into office space, a restaurant and more.

Wednesday, 19th May 2021, 10:20 am

Property management firm Dedman Lettings has bought St Cuthmans in Coolham village, which was previously owned by the Catholic Church and used as a retreat, managing partner Harriet Hewitt-Dedman said.

She added the company is renaming the retreat as Old House Manor Estate.

Harriet said: “The estate spans across 55/60 acres and has a five acre lake within the grounds.

The house is a former church retreat. Photo: Harriet Hewitt-Dedman

“The estate is made up of a large country house.

“Downstairs of the main house comprises of a library, multiple large rooms and an industrial sized kitchen which we are hoping to use as a restaurant, events space or alternatively office/meeting rooms.

“There is a two bedroom lodge house which is ready to be rented and there are multiple commercial buildings on site including units, office space, and a building with potential for a cafe/farm shop to take up the space.”

There are also shepherd huts, a chapel and boathouse which may in the future be used as airbnbs.

Harriet added: “With the surrounding land we will graze animals as well as looking into glamping pods and enclosed dog walking fields.

“The five acre lake could be a fantastic opportunity to offer fishing however we are waiting to find out what fish are in there! If we are able to sort this then we will definitely offer fishing days.”

The said the project is in its early stages but she hopes the estate will add to Coolham and involve the local community.