Alexandra Gardens Ventnor Isle of Wight: villas fit for Gentlemen

Alexandra Gardens, named after HRH Alexandra, Princess of Wales, is a private road of eight grand villas overlooking the beach and harbour in Ventnor on the south coast of the Isle of Wight.

The villas had, and many still do have to this day, wonderful gothic style carved staircases from the ground up to the second floor with ornate plaster cornicing and magnificent ceiling roses. The ground and first floor front rooms were large with high ceilings, bay windows and magnificent views. Unusually high skirting went round all of the rooms. The main reception rooms had large marble and slate fireplaces. When built they would have been among the finest houses in Ventnor.

Sir Edward Elgar’s Honeymoon

Edward and Alice Elgar spent an idyllic two weeks of their honeymoon staying on the first floor of 3 Alexandra Gardens, following their wedding at Brompton Oratory in London.

He wrote to his friend Will Grafton “…. We are liking this place very much & have nice rooms over-looking the sea…”

More on Elgar's Honeymoon

Rookie hoteliers

Mr and Mrs Percy Turney and their young family arrive at 2 Alexandra Gardens following Mr Turney’s demob, having previously worked as a sales assistant at the London department store Gamages.

Their son tells what it was like to be living in a guest house in the 1950’s.

More on Mr & Mrs Turney

World War 2

During the Second World War Alexandra Gardens was the home to evacuated school children and troops. The radar station on St Boniface Down meant that the town was a bombing target.

More on World War 2

Ventnor Mill

Alexandra Gardens is built on the site of an ancient water mill which was there from at least the 1300’s until it was demolished in 1875 to make way for the present day villas.

More on Ventnor Mill

Rev A Allon Smith

Rev A Allon Smith was minister at Ventnor Congregational Churchin the 1920s. For much of that time he lived at 3 Alexandra Gardens, which he didn’t mind anyone know he didn’t like.

More on Rev Allon Smith
On this site you can discover some of the things that happened in the past in the individual houses. Just go to “The Individual Houses” on the menubar and from the dropdown menu select the address of the house in which you are interested.
Contact us if you have any memories of Alexandra Gardens.  Share your knowledge if  you stayed in one of the houses on holiday, lived in the street years ago, or  remember being at an event in the street.

Alexandra Gardens today

In the 21st century the street is undergoing a revival. Between 2006 and 2009 four of the houses have been completely refurbished, improving the street environment. Only two of the houses remain as single units, number 5 and number 3, Bermuda House, which is a large  self catering holiday let. It is the owners of these properties who collaborated with the help of neighbours and the Ventnor and District Local History Society (particular thanks go to the late Fay Brown) to produce this site.