C5d69cd5-4932-4be4-8a56-d5fac75d0951An iconic landmark in Ryde has been guaranteed a safe future thanks to a Heritage Lottery grant.

Natural Enterprise, working in partnership with Ryde Town and Isle of Wight Councils, have secured funding to restore the historic Appley Tower to its former glory.

Supporters came together with children from local Oakfield Primary School on Wednesday morning to celebrate the news.

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Brian Friend, Natural Enterprise Chairman said:

“The project will ensure the much-loved building may be enjoyed by both the community and visitors for years to come. As well as the planned structural repairs to the tower and the creation of four new beach huts for short term hire, there will be an opportunity for people to get involved with the research into the tower’s heritage.”


Councillor Michael Lilley, Appley and Elmfield Ward Councillor, Mayor of Ryde and Deputy Chair of Isle of Wight Council said:

“I am delighted that after 4 years of collaborative work the long-term future of the Tower has now been secured to enable it to remain in community ownership for all to enjoy both inside and out.

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“It has taken dedicated partnership and teamwork between residents, Ryde Town and Isle of Wight Councils, Natural Enterprise and Monkton Arts to find the way forward for this amazing heritage project.  I am really honoured to be part of the team that has made this happen; like so many Islanders and Ryde residents I have a deep love for the Tower.”

Once the renovations are complete, visitors will be able to take advantage of the amazing views from the top as well as activities provided by Monkton Arts, who will manage the tower. When the renovations are complete the tower will host 3 exhibitions about its history, changes to the views from the tower and the local tourism offering.


Anyone interested in being trained as a volunteer researcher, looking into the history of Appley Tower, the Hutt family and the Solent, should contact [email protected].

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Appley Tower is expected to be open to the public once more in Summer 2024.

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Di di
Di di
11 months ago

Great news, means this iconic Ryde landmark will survive at least for the near future.
I have happy memories of it as a child, when we called it the Shell Castle, as it housed a shop selling all manner of shell and beach art. Used to save my pocket money to spend in there.

Stefan C. Attrill
Stefan C. Attrill
Reply to  Di di
11 months ago

I forgot about the shell shop. Thanks for the reminder.

Wasn’t there also a mystic meg inside the tower, or did I dream that?


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