Wednesday, 16 March 2011
The Gatsby House - Beautiful and Damned?
Over a century later, it is obvious that the passage of time has not been kind to these once-magnificent buildings. Most have disappeared, while the few that remain have fallen into a state of chronic disrepair. Land’s End is no exception – now virtually abandoned, the dilapidated house is a weak reflection of its former brilliance, its faded grandeur only vaguely hinting at the halcyon period of its glory days during the 1920s.
It came as no surprise, then, when it was announced that the present
This in itself is hardly newsworthy. After all, it is a story that has played out many times before. Yet, the impending demise of Land’s End has been making headlines all over the United States. Why? Well, it seems this particular house has some quite unexpected literary connections …
Unsurprisingly, the current owner has attracted much criticism for his plan to raze such an important cultural landmark. Both conservationists and literary buffs alike are outraged at the prospect. In response, the beleaguered owner argues that he is left with no choice. In an attempt to avoid demolishing Land’s End, he tried to sell the property - but potential buyers baulked at the $30 million price tag. It seems that the house is something of a money-pit, costing the owner an astonishing $4,500 per day for maintenance and security – an unsustainable amount even for the wealthiest of property developers.
Let’s hope for the latter …
Update: On April 16, 2011, Lands End was indeed demolished - a great loss for literary history. See a report on the demolition from CBS: