Help fix A la Ronde’s leaky roof by reading a good book

PUBLISHED: 13:35 06 September 2018

A La Ronde's 'pre-loved' book sale aims to raise much-needed funds to fix the building's leaking roof. Picture: contributed

A La Ronde's 'pre-loved' book sale aims to raise much-needed funds to fix the building's leaking roof. Picture: contributed


The custodians of a famous and historical sixteen-sided house in Exmouth are holding a bonanza book sale to raise money for fixing its roof.

A La Ronde. Photo by Terry Ife ref exe 3032-22-13TIA La Ronde. Photo by Terry Ife ref exe 3032-22-13TI

A La Ronde, on Summer Lane, near Lympstone, is currently holding its annual Pre-Loved Book Sale, to raise money for its upkeep.

The National Trust property in Exmouth is currently investigating the cause of water ingress into its shell gallery and working out how to fix the leak.

Previous owners of A la Ronde have used creative fundraising methods to care for the unique house, from breeding Airedale puppies, to holding minuets.

The National Trust is no exception; Second hand book sales raise in excess of £10,000 each year for the conservation of A la Ronde.

More than 1,000 books and many jigsaw puzzles are currently on sale in the hay meadow and house. The puzzles are pre-checked by volunteers to make sure all the pieces are in place.

Operations manager, Salli Carr-Griffin, said: “Each year, a fantastic array of books is donated and we save the vintage, collectable, first editions and signed copies for this very special event.

“All the books are kindly donated and a team of volunteers sort the books to check their condition and give them the right price. This event raises a fantastic sum of money which will be going into making the roof watertight and keeping our shells dry.”

A la Ronde is a sixteen-sided building full of creative treasures from around the world. This hexadecagonal building was the work of cousins Jane and Mary Parminter in 1796.

The house has almost exclusively been owned by women and maintained a feminist legacy, still going strong today.

Visitors can view its striking shell and feather designs throughout the house, find out about its creative design and ask about its one and only male owner.

With the 360-degree touch screen virtual tour, every visitor can get up close to the shell gallery and view the shell ceiling, as the Parminter women intended while conservation work is ongoing.

The annual book sale got started on Friday, August 31, and will continue until Sunday, September 9.

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