Site Records


Site Name: Chislehurst - South East London Regional War Room

Kemnal Road
Chislehurst
Kent

[Source: Nick Catford]

This bunker was one of the four London group controls. It was replaced by a new bunker at Pear Tree House in south-east London. Both bunkers covered the South East Group (Bexley, Bromley, Croydon, Greenwich, Lewisham, Southwark). It was identical in design to those at Cheam, Wanstead and Mill Hill.

Photo: The bunker before conversion
Photo by Steve Fox

After closure the bunker was abandoned and over the years was damaged by fire and vandals and became a playground for local children until the site was bought by estate agents Piermont in 1998 whose plan was to convert it into a unique luxury home. In order to achieve this they employed specialists Son Et Lumiere to fit the converted bunker with the very latest in intelligent control and design.

Within two years the bunker was transformed into 'The Glasshouse' Through the glass entrance way the immediate interior is not so much a hallway, but rather an atrium from which all rooms on the ground level lead off, and in the middle of which sits a swimming pool complete with a steel and glass staircase curving over it and leading to the top level. Directly over the pool and enveloping the centre of the property is an enormous glass roof which gives the house its name. The roof can be opened using an electric motor.

 

Photo: The front of the bunker showing the windows cut through the walls
Photo by Nick Catford

Windows have been cut into the 5' thick walls, each window the result of three days work by a two tonne cutting machine. On the ground floor, The Glasshouse has four sizeable bedrooms, two bathrooms (one en suite from the main bedroom) and one 'L' shaped shower room that owes its unusual design to the fact that it was the original blast- proof entrance to the bunker. The living room is large and spacious, as is the dining room and the kitchen.

Walking around the interior of 'The Glasshouse', it's almost impossible to believe it was ever anything other than a stunning luxury home. The tell tale sign for the presence of a higher intelligence in buildings are the array of small switches which adorn the walls, switches which can control not just the lights, but also the curtains and even the windows. Should you not want to get up out of your seat to operate a switch, everything can also be controlled from touchscreens and, if that isn't enough control, the home can be controlled remotely from anywhere in the world.

Photo: The hole cut to take the opening glass roof
Photo by Nick Catford

On top of this is the Housewife Electronic Lighting system which permits the owner to set internal and external scenes at the touch of a button and is automatically linked to the entrance gates and the video entrance system. But the very core of the home's technology comes from the structured wiring system allowing the installation of sophisticated telephone and data systems which can then be linked to the Home Control System. This setup will permit high-speed Internet access from any room in the house along with the ability to communicate with visitors at the gates over cellular networks. Also installed is pre-wiring to enable the use of multi-room audio which can even be piped outside on to the roof terraces and played around the garden through its special rock-shaped speakers.

The asking price was 3,000,000 and as yet The Glasshouse remains unsold despite a recent reduction in the price.

For photographs of the bunker after conversion see the Estate Agents web site.

[Source: Nick Catford]


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Last updated 20th July 2004

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