During World War I, the Canadian Government shipped thousands of wooden huts to England to house the vast number of troops awaiting deployment to France and Belgium. The Blue Beach House began life as one of these huts. It was originally designed to accomodate three officers with a sitting room. After the war was over, the huts were no longer required, and the British Government sold them off as surplus. Their solid construction and easy assembly made them suitable for a range of uses. Many were acquired by sports clubs and are still in use today as cricket pavillions and club houses. Others were repurposed as out-houses, holiday chalets, workshops and sheds.
Our hut was transported to the island in 1925. Over the years, The Blue Beach House has had many uses, such as tea rooms, a garage, and holiday accommodation, until it was finally left to fall into disrepair. The photographs below show The Blue Beach House as Mrs Smith’s Tea Rooms, c1930. It was run by Mrs 'Mowey' Smith and her husband George, who was a fisherman based at Lane End. As you can see from the pictures, the building exterior is still largely original. The current owners purchased the restored property in 2013, and the building retains as much of its former character as possible. The dark brown wooden interior cladding is original, and is constructed of Canadian cedar. The interior doors of the bedrooms and en-suite are also original, as are the size and layout.
The links below give more history on these wonderful huts around the country. The sixth photo down of the final link looks very similar to the exterior of The Blue Beach House and the interior (seventh photo) is also very similar to the interior of The Blue Beach House.
Great War Huts
The Cannock Chase Camps
World War I Barrack Huts In Suffolk
World War I Barrack Huts