Looking at the Whitehall today, it’s hard to imagine that it stands in what was once the garden of the first house to be built in Bournemouth. In 1810, Lewis Tregonwell purchased a plot of land adjacent to what is now the Central Gardens and built “The Mansion” as it was called. Prior to this, the area between Christchurch and Poole was heathland.
The photograph on the left shows the Central Gardens (just fields at that time) with the Bourne stream running through in 1864. Shortly after this picture was taken, the land in the foreground and to the right was leased from Lewis Tregonwell’s son, John, by Peter Tuck, and this is where the Whitehall Hotel was built.
The Tregonwell family no longer lived in The Mansion and so had no qualms about the land being developed. The building, which became The Whitehall, was built in 1865 originally as a private dwelling.
The history of the Whitehall Hotel Bournemouth is somewhat sketchy before it became a hotel. At some point between then and the turn of the century it was turned into an hotel and was known as The Allegria – the building on the right in the photo on the right.
The hotel retained that name until the First World War and has been The Whitehall Hotel ever since.