£2.3million awarded by Department for Culture, Media and Sport to one of Britain’s oldest intact naval buildings

Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust is pleased to announce it has been awarded £2,318,400
for capital works to Commissioner’s House by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport
through the Museum Estate and Development Fund (MEND), administered by Arts Council

The essential funding will enable the Trust to repair and preserve the historic fabric of the
Grade I listed scheduled ancient monument, replace and update electrical and mechanical
services and safeguard its collections. Once capital works are complete, Commissioner’s
House will be energy efficient, better interpreted and provide greater public access, ensuring
the future sustainability of the building as a heritage asset. The works will be carried out
within the next 24 months.

Richard Morsley, Chief Executive, Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust, said:
“We are incredibly grateful to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and Arts Council
England for awarding Museums and Estates Development funding for Commissioner’s
House. This Scheduled Ancient Monument is Britain’s oldest intact naval building and one of
the finest examples of Georgian architecture. The funding will allow us to undertake a
programme of essential maintenance, including a full roof replacement, which will safeguard
the building for future generations. In addition we are working to widen public access,
rightfully restoring Commissioner’s House back to the heart of the Historic Dockyard.


The Queen Anne style Commissioner’s House is Britain’s oldest intact naval building and is
little changed since its original construction. Originally, this grand Georgian mansion, served
as the home and office to the Dockyard Commissioner. The house was built for Captain
George St Lo in 1704, on the site of an earlier residence constructed in 1640.
Commissioner’s House is a heritage asset of the highest order. One of the most attractive
internal decorations is a ceiling painting depicting an assembly of the gods, with Mars
crowning Neptune. The painting is attributed to Highmore with figure work by Thornhill. The
painting was originally fitted onboard HMS Royal Sovereign.

The Trust would like to thank the design team including: Namur Projects Ltd, PCS
Consulting Services Ltd, Bob Dollin, Price & Myers, and van Heyningen and Haward
Architects for their project vision and historic building expertise which has contributed to the
success of securing MEND.

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport funds MEND which is administered by Arts
Council England.