“Other People Matter”

-“Nemo a me alienus”

We became aware of the sad news that Moira House school was closing during the Spring of 2020.

Despite the best efforts of one of the country’s leading agents, no school could be found to take over the premises. Subsequently a decision was made by Roedean Moira House to offer the site for development. At this point we viewed the site and had the first of many pre-application meetings with the local authority.

The Criteria

Together we agreed the following:

  • A residential scheme in this location would be supported
  • Moira House, Boston House and Dunn House are considered to be of significant historical interest, and it is therefore considered vital that the three existing buildings be retained in some form
  • The design and building materials used need to be of a high quality, befitting one of Eastbourne’s most important sites in terms of history and heritage
  • High quality landscaping would be of vital importance
  • There would need to be ample provision for parking
  • The site is not listed but sits within a prominent location in one of Eastbourne’s most important conservation areas, neighbouring South Downs National Park. Consequently, careful attention would need to be made to the existing buildings fronting Carlisle and Upper Carlisle Road
  • Having consulted with heritage and ecology professionals we are aware of the huge importance of the emerging design
drone photo of moira house

The History of Moira House

Moira House, a boarding school for girls, was founded on the 24th of January 1875 by Charles Barlow Ingham. The school was his response to a deficit in female education that was drawn to his attention when he noticed the poor level of education given to his sisters.

Charles decided to contribute to the education of women by spending time in and with people in the education sector in New York and taking on the most innovative practices in schools at the time.

The resulting building was a purpose-built school for girls that strived to provide them with the best education possible, with his daughter as the first head teacher. The school originally occupied Carlisle Lodge before moving across the road into purpose-built premises at Moira House.

The school was so successful however that it grew rapidly in numbers and popularity leading to the purchase and construction of a second school building, Boston House, which provides the famous turret that is so iconic in the street scene and can be seen from miles around.

Dunn House was added in 1925.

On 27 January 2018, Moira House merged with Roedean School as part of the newly created Roedean Group of Schools and was renamed Roedean Moira House. Sadly, the school closed in August 2020.

As the buildings evolve into their latest incarnation, we will ensure that the school motto carries on with them.

“Nemo a me alienus” – “Other people matter”

10 Things You Need to Know


The footprint of built-up area on the site is actually being reduced from 5345m2 to 4766m2 for the proposed buildings.


156 of the high-quality trees are being retained. 55 self-seeded and low-quality trees are being removed and will be replaced with high quality trees.


A new public access seating and garden area is being proposed at the front of Boston House, directly opposite Meads Lawn Tennis Club.


A public access ecology garden is being proposed. Located in the heart of the site, it will include a mini nature walk, children’s play area and extensive flora and fauna planting to attract bees and wildlife.


An underground car park is being proposed which will be a solution for all the residents’ and visitors’ parking requirements, hiding cars from view to make way for high-quality landscaping.


The design and delivery of the Moira House Development will create up to 200 new jobs during the development period.


Approximately £25,000,000 of investment will be created based on the local economic value of local spend in the supply chain during the first five years following practical completion of the scheme.


The intention is that all new build houses will be carbon neutral. The conversion of the period buildings will be one of the most energy efficient of this kind in Europe.


All three period buildings are being retained. It is proposed that the historic school house will be converted back to its original form when constructed in the late 1800’s.


The proposed scheme is comprised of 18 houses and 33 apartments in existing buildings.

One of the UK’s Strongest Development Teams

James Taylor


James was born in Eastbourne and is passionate about the town and surrounding countryside. James has over 30 years’ experience of the residential development sector working for some of the UK’s largest housebuilders and overseas with some of the world’s largest developers. Before founding And CompanyJames was previously Group Sales and Marketing Director of Ballymore Group, Managing Director of an HBOS property joint-venture and a director of Redrow Homes.

Peter Bennison


Peter offers 30 years’ experience in the residential development sector with expertise in construction and planning. He founded Hadley Property Group and Meadow Residential, two organisation which have delivered in excess of 4,000 residential units in the UK over the past decade.

Alex Vogel


Alex is an experienced project manager having delivered schemes in both London and the South East. He has a passion for delivering sustainable buildings and implementing modern methods of construction wherever possible.

Tom Barnes


Tom Barnes leads the Residential Team at CPC which is currently project managing and quantity surveying over 10,000 homes across the UK. CPC have an in-depth knowledge of all residential tenures from super prime through to affordable housing, with specialist in-house technical support teams. We understand the critical success factors on residential projects and the importance of stakeholder engagement and management.

Jo Saady


Jo has over 30 years’ experience and specialises in quality one-off houses and developments. Jo has a wealth of experience of working across East Sussex and the South Downs National Park. Jo’s firm of architects, Ecotecture, is committed to producing stand out quality developments that deliver ecological credentials through design.

Dean Giles


SWP are an established structural and civil engineering design consultancy. Their range of services are based around a partnering style approach to clients and co-professional communications.

Tim Bellamy


Bellamy Wallace Partnership provides a proactive & professional Engineering Consultancy service, from conceptual planning through to design and eventual handover. Their experienced, prompt and reliable staff endeavour to provide our client’s solutions on time, to budget and to a high standard.

James Forster


Thornley & Lumb Partnership Ltd are a multi-disciplined building services consultancy with a strong ethos on sustainability, which is driven by their in-house building physics team. They work with the design team to develop building services solutions that meet the client needs and deliver energy efficient and sustainable buildings. They have a wealth of knowledge of new and developing technologies allowing them to consider the most suitable solutions for their clients’ needs.

Chris Frost


Amir Aramfar


Future Planning and Development is an independent consultancy providing expert advice to developers, investors, private landowners and local authorities. The practice specialises in major planning and development projects in London and the South-East.

Steve Burgess


Steve Burgess is the Civil Engineering Project Engineer for this scheme. He has over 10 years engineering experience in infrastructure and transport and has worked at The Civil Engineering Practice for over 6 years. Supported by highly competent Engineers, Project Managers, Technical Staff and Office Support Staff, The Civil Engineering Practice offers a premium quality service from a highly qualified team.

Rob Pierce


Phlorum is a highly-experienced multi-disciplinary environmental consultancy, specialising in air quality assessments and ecology. They offer monitoring and assessment services to complement the requirements of all aspects of environmental, ecological and sustainability issues affecting construction projects, industrial processes, and businesses in general.

Peter Davies


PJC are based in Kent and East Sussex. They provide Ecological, Arboricultural and Landscape Design Services across the South-East, and are qualified to assess and provide advice on the health, benefit and management of trees and woodland though a programme of tree surveys and associated arboricultural services.

Louise Barker


Working with clients and design teams, the team at Lizard Landscaoe and Design seek to work towards retaining and protecting the natural environment of woodland, trees, hedgerows, grassland and other important landscape and ecological habitats within development sites.

Their design approach places an emphasis on the values of the local council and community; the people, working groups, volunteers and businesses, being entirely inclusive throughout the design process through to implementation. They believe that greater value can be gained through community input, whereby ownership should pass to the collectives within the community to dynamically affect and implement the future management of the project aims and achievements.

Adam Melrose


Fire Safety Engineering uses scientific principles to demonstrate that the most ambitious and challenging designs comply with statutory regulation. Their engineering team use project experience from around the world to provide a solutions-based, collaborative approach.

Dermot McCaffery


With 29 years’ experience in the highway aspects of development proposals in both Local Authorities and private consultancies, Dermot has specialist knowledge of transport policy, highway legislation and highway design. He provides expert consultancy support for any development scenario.

Jane Zara


M J Zara Associates is a family firm based in Lewes, East Sussex. They have been a land and building surveying company for over 50 years. M J Zara Associates is dedicated to the production of the highest quality survey services to surveyors, architects, engineers and private clients.

Chris Butler


Chris Butler Archaeological Services Ltd has been in existence for over 10 years and undertakes commercial archaeological projects across the South-East, including watching briefs, evaluations, excavations, landscape and historic building surveys, as well as preparing desk-based assessments and heritage statements.

Stephen Clyne


EFM was established in 1990 and is a small firm which predominantly specialises in providing advice and support to developers on education matters. They have many major house builders amongst their clients, together with smaller operators, landowners and developers. Their consultants have more than 100 years of combined experience across the public and private sectors.

Ann Rowland


Ann is a chartered landscape architect, a member of the Landscape Institute, past Chairman of the Landscape Institute Professional Review Group for Greenwich University and has been practicing as a qualified landscape architect for over 30 years.

Her professional experience extends across all market sectors at all scales and includes the design and implementation of health, education, leisure, housing and commercial developments, private estates and large gardens and the production of landscape and visual impact assessments and appraisals. She formed Landscape Perspective in 2006, with her former co-director Mike Gibbs. One of the UK’s Strongest Development Teams

Embracing Change

The design team has been inspired by the school’s motto ‘Other people matter’. The team were determined to design a new housing scheme which would enhance the lives of the local community as well as welcoming new residents. With this in mind we are proposing two public access garden areas – one fronting Upper Carlisle Road and a best-in-class ecological garden located in the heart of the site.


The emerging design of the scheme is to be completely open and inclusive for the local community:

  • Open and welcoming site accessible to everyone, with no restrictions on public access
  • New public seating area fronting Upper Carlisle Road and the Meads Lawn Tennis Club
  • New ecological garden and children’s play area
  • Beautiful landscaped grounds
  • New opportunities for walking and cycling
  • Breathing new life into the currently disused Moira House buildings creating a sensitive and high quality streetscape to this important conservation area within Eastbourne.

Existing Site Plan

Proposed Site Plan

Proposed Street View

Positive Conservation

The proposed scheme has endeavoured to maintain and enhance the original heritage buildings on site with the aim of reinstating Moira and Dunn House back to their original form. The proposal has taken the utmost care to use the existing context to guide the development and character of the proposed new build homes on site to better emphasise heritage assets present in the immediate and wider area.

The proposal also intends to restore and sustain the current facades of the existing buildings to ensure that future generations will be able to experience the heritage assets that are available in a prime state. The current site has become an eclectic mix of buildings that do not necessarily enhance or promote a sustainable or ecologically friendly space for the immediate community.

The Community

Central to our design aspirations for Moira House was the creation of high-quality outdoor spaces that the whole community can use, not just the residents. This has manifested itself in the creation of a public garden and seating area at the corner of Carlisle and Upper Carlisle Roads. Designed by acclaimed landscape architect Ann Rowland, the garden design provides seasonal beauty for anyone passing the development, as well as a seating area that can be used by the general public, creating a hub for the community. Within the heart of the development there is a second public eco garden, providing a joyful space for all generations.

Given the relatively car-free nature of the residents of Eastbourne, the scheme aims to make walking through the development a pleasant experience for the inhabitants of the area. It has integrated a well-furnished play area and well landscaped areas that make taking a stroll around the development a relaxing and visually stimulating experience. The play area encourages interaction between families, fostering a greater sense of community amongst the residents.

The development has been designed to provide the residents with a sense of being within their own community through the location of the new build houses while striking the balance of not being closed off to the immediate or the wider area. This gives a greater sense of privacy that a large development could sometimes lack. It also provides a sense of ownership amongst the inhabitants of our little community.

Proposed Gardens

The Environment

The proposal has taken into consideration that it shares a boundary with the South Downs National Park and has been designed to respect the periphery of the park. The proposal achieves this by maintaining a strict distance from the boundary of the park and has used a carefully considered tree planting distribution plan to ensure that neither the homeowners or the explorers of the park will be adversely affected, visually or otherwise.

We also take advantage of our detailed and carefully developed tree plan to help the proposed homes maintain a cooler internal temperature through solar shading in the summer months.
The scheme has also put in place a Sustainable Drainage Systems plan to effectively utilise and control rainwater movement to mitigate the effects that a high level of runoff water will have on the Eastbourne drainage system. Drainage management is just one of the benefits of our landscape plan for the scheme. It also has considered planting in the green areas to encourage bees, butterflies, and birds to increase the biodiversity present on site.

Positive for the Economy

The design and delivery of the Moira House Development will create up to 200 new jobs during the development period. Approximately £25,000,000 of investment will be created based on the local economic value of local spend in the supply chain during the first 5 years following practical completion of the scheme.

Design Inspiration

Decorative finials on the existing buildings, including spikes and balls, will be replicated in the new build houses.

Standard ceiling heights to new build homes are 2.4m. Our new build homes will offer 3m ceiling heights to principal rooms, while the ceilings in the refurbished apartments will be between 2.8m and 4m, giving the rooms an impressive sense of space and light.

The importance of retaining heritage and architecture is fundamental to our designs.

By retaining sash windows in the existing buildings wherever possible, we are aspiring to keep the existing street scene without fundamental changes.

By creating shared open spaces for the residents and neighbours we aim to encourage community interaction.

An aspiration to create carbon neutral new build homes and encourage cycling will have a positive impact on the environment.

What Matters To You?

The development of Moira House will benefit the local community in a number of ways. You can let us know the three things that matter most to you and also what you think of the proposed plans for the regeneration and development of Moira House, it’s associated buildings and land

have your say