Jan 15 2013 by Tom Duffy, Formby Times
BUSINESSMAN Mike McComb has unveiled stunning plans to restore the Firwood estate and build Formby’s premier new house.
Mr McComb has applied to build a seven bedroom palladian mansion, with underground parking and roof terraces offering stunning views of the surrounding woodlands, and dunes rolling across the Ravenmeols countryside.
Speaking exclusively to the Times, the property developer revealed that the plans submitted to Sefton Council are the culmination of several years work to restore Firwood, which was built by Dr Richard Formby in 1853.
Mr McComb, who currently lives in Formby Hall, has worked closely with English Heritage to restore the estate that was also lived in by the Formby family.
Mr McComb, of Formby Hall Investments, said: “This is an opportunity to re-create the Firwood estate, but with a modern twist. The stunning setting dictates a stunning house.
“Fortunately, I secured the services of Southport architects RAL, who work to the very highest standards.
“The palladian villa will be built with Portland stone, and feature underground parking.
“It will be Formby’s premier new property.
“But the project is not just about the house. I also want to restore the woodland and preserve and protect the wildlife such as bats and squirrels.
“The project is both an attempt to preserve a chapter of Formby’s history and set new architectural standards.
“Subject to planning permission we hope to start work this spring.”
Firwood House was built by Dr Richard Formby, one of the founders of Liverpool Medical School, as a retirement home.
After suffering several heart attacks, Dr Formby died in 1897, and a plaque in nearby St Luke’s church celebrates his life.