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Conan Doyle expert seeks to save author's home

20th July 2010

A legal challenge has been launched to save the Surrey home designed by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle from redevelopment.

John Gibson, who has written several books on the Sherlock Holmes author, told the Guardian that he will use his own money to fight for the future of Undershaw in Hindhead.

The house, where Conan Doyle wrote The Hound of the Baskervilles and entertained contemporaries such as J.M. Barrie and Bram Stoker, is now owned by developer Fossway - which recently received planning permission from Waverley Borough Council to convert it into separate homes.

Gibson has secured a local government ombudsman investigation into the approval and said he will now pursue a High Court review of the case in a bid to have it overturned.

'There are very few literary houses that were actually built to the writer's own ideas and design,' he told the newspaper.

Last month, Conan Doyle's great-nephew Richard Doyle told getsurrey.co.uk that the author's family had been trying to buy Undershaw to save it but could not afford the high asking price

'It is just such a shame that all that history will be lost forever,' he added.

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