It was on this piece of land, where the soil was deposited, that Anthony Dunsdon had the idea of using the redundant stone reservoir (which used to supply the workhouse with water) as a possible site for an underground house.
He asked Hans Klaentschi, responsible for the Ancliff Square conversion to draw up plans for the project. An application to build it was submitted to the West Wiltshire District Council in November 1993.Although it received widespread local support, final planning approval was not given (following a public enquiry) until February 1995. Construction of the underground house by local builders, Shelland & Winter, began in April 1995 and was completed in August 1997.
The Dunsdon family moved in at the beginning of September and began the process of landscaping the huge mound of soil left over from the excavation for the underground dwelling, now named Ancliff Down.
Many of the materials used in the re-making of the landscape were stones and pavings from the former workhouse school and from the old reservoir. Specifically, the stone steps up the banks (slabs from the floor of the reservoir), flagstones which had originally paved workhouse floors and the standing stones, dug up when the site was excavated. Also, timbers from the workhouse were used to make the treads of the staircase. In 1999, the Dunsdons erected a stone circle with a central stone and seven outer stones at Ancliff Down to commemorate the millennium and their seven children.
Anthony Dunsdon served on the Westwood Parish Council for four years and was partly responsible for planting over 200 trees around the parish following the damage done by Dutch Elm disease.
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