The Lantern Community Charity 1075845, a life-sharing community inclusive of adults with learning disabilities, based near Ringwood (Hampshire), needed a holiday home for those with special needs to have occasional breaks. In 1999, after a long search, the house known now as ‘Seahorses’ was considered suitable and purchased by the Sheiling Trust, the ‘umbrella’ Charity. From the beginning it was the aim to provide guest house facilities for the general public as well; this would form the basis for a really needed service, and also the necessary work and training opportunities. As in all Lantern Community households, which live and work together as an extended family and team, there is the aim to see that the real needs of the other person are fulfilled as far as possible.
The Guest House
Since 1999 the Guest House aspect to our work has developed to the point where we are regularly fully booked during July and August, often with repeat visitors. We are also well known and used by the locality, mostly for visiting family and friends. As a ‘dog friendly’ establishment we feature in various web-sites for pet lovers. Quite often ramblers discover us, as the Freshwater/Yarmouth footpath passes through our garden! For our guests we have four bedrooms; two family, one double and one with two singles, all en-suite. In addition we have a breakfast room, a lounge and two conservatories for our guests to enjoy. Seahorses holds a four-star rating from English Tourism.
The House and Gardens
The house was originally an early Victorian Rectory (the Chapel is still next door at St. Andrews Parish Hall) and one can see it has been extended here and there by the differing stonework. You are very welcome to look around, just ask the team. The land around totals 2.5 acres and includes lawns, mature trees, flower beds, an orchard and a productive vegetable garden.