The Tarring Folly – A Grade II Listed Building Sadly Decaying

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The Tarring Folly in Worthing

The Tarring Folly

Photograph of the Tarring Folly. © South Coast View.

The Tarring Folly, to the rear of 100 South Street, Tarring, Worthing, is a tower of flintstone construction. Mr W. Osborne Boyce, a solicitor, purchased the house at No. 100 in 1893 and built the folly as a study to be an “escape from his children”. Although restoration works took place in the 1950s, sadly, it had again fallen into decay.

Source: Roger Davies, 1990, Tarring: A Walk Through Its History. Privately published. p. 121.

Attempts to restore the Tarring Folly appear to have failed

The latest and only Worthing Borough Council references I can find relating to the Tarring Folly are on the council’s website.

The first item is an enforcement report dated 4 March 2015, and the second is an update to the enforcement report dated 3 June 2015.

We learn from the above-listed documents that the Tarring Folly is a Grade II listed building, as detailed in the National Heritage List on the Historic England website. We also learn that the folly appears to be suffering from significant structural degradation.

These council documents indicate that, at their time of publication, there seemed to be a will by Worthing Borough Council to facilitate remediation works that could have restored the folly to its former glory and structural integrity. However, these documents also tell us that the restoration project did not appear to have the cooperation of the then-current owner of the property at 100 South Street in Tarring.

Sources: Enforcement Report of 4th March 2015 and Enforcement Report of 3 June 2015. PDF documents.

View the full listing for the Tarring Folly on Historic England’s website

Folly to rear of number 100, South Street. Historic England website. Date first listed: 24 July 1989.

View the structural report on the RBC Surveyors website

This undated report was commissioned by Adur & Worthing Council:

The Folly, South Street, Worthing, West Sussex

How to see the Tarring Folly

There is no public access point from where the complete structure can be viewed. The only place from where there is a partial view of the folly is from the west side of South Street, immediately south of Athelstan Road.

Tarring Folly viewed from South Street
Tarring Folly viewed from South Street

Complete view of the Folly from the Worthing Journal dated 2013

Click or touch the photograph below to read the full post from the Worthing Journal.

The Tarring Folly and The Victoria Tea Gardens

The Victoria Tea Gardens, owned by Alfred Carter, occupied numbers 94 to 98 South Street for ten years around the 1900s.

Source: Roger Davies, 1990, Tarring: A Walk Through Its History. Privately published. p. 121-122.

The Bygone Worthing private Facebook group shows us some photographs of the Victoria Tea Gardens. It seems to me that at one time, these tea gardens, with their splendid view of the Tarring Folly, were an oasis of tranquillity.

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