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Adisham Bungalow | Country House in Haputale

Adisham Bungalow
St. Benedict's Monastery, popularly known by its former name Adisham Bungalow/Hall (Sinhala: එඩිෂම් බංගලාව; Tamil: அடிசம் ஓரடுக்கு மனை), is a country house situated west of Haputale town in Badulla District, Sri Lanka. Belonging to the Sylvestro Benedictine Congregation, the house lies on a property of 10 acres located in the eastern part of Thangamale Sanctuary.

History
Adisham was constructed in the period 1927-1931 by the English aristocrat and planter Sir Thomas Lister Villiers (31 Oct 1869-21 Dec 1959), former Chairman of George Steuart Co. Ltd, the first company registered in Sri Lanka. Named after Adisham in England, the building was designed by R. Booth and F. Webster in Tudor and Jacobean architectural style. It is said that Adisham was modelled on Thomas's house in Kent and Leeds Castle in England (Gunawardena, 2003).

In 1951, the property was bought by Vimala Wijewardena (7 Aug 1908-27 Jan 1994), the director of Sedawatta Estates Ltd. and the country's first female cabinet minister. The ownership changed when Sylvestro Benedictine Congregation bought Adisham in 1961. It was blessed and consecrated as St. Benedict's Monastery and novitiate by Father Aiden de Silva OSB, then Superior Major of Sylvestro Benedictines in Sri Lanka on 8 December 1962.

The bungalow
The bungalow and garden have been designed according to the British architectural style (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009). The hewn stones have been used to build the walls of the bungalow while the doors, windows, staircase and floors are made up of Burma teak (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009). The roof is covered with timber singles (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009). Some parts of the bungalow have been altered later by the addition of new rooms (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009).

Adisham Bungalow Adisham Bungalow
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Attribution
1) Adisham bunglaw by Nisal Senanayaka is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0
2) Adisham bungalow by Venushka Fonseka is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0
3) Adisham Bungalow by AntanO is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

References
1) De Silva, N.; Chandrasekara, D.P., 2009. Heritage Buildings of Sri Lanka. Colombo: The National Trust Sri Lanka, ISBN: 978-955-0093-01-4. p.135.
2) Gunawardena, C.A., 2003. Encyclopedia of Sri Lanka. Sterling Publishers Pvt Ltd. ISBN: 81-207-2536-0. p.6.

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This page was last updated on 18 August 2023

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