East Cliff Hall was the home of Merton (1835-1921) and Annie Russell-Cotes (1835-1920). The building of East Cliff Hall was begun in 1897 and was completed in its first form in 1901.
The house was designed by the architect, John Frederick Fogerty, but Merton and Annie had a great deal of input into the design. It was designed so that Merton and Annie could live in style and comfort and to house their growing collections. The house was to be a showcase, not simply for their own enjoyment, but also for the people of Bournemouth to whom it was given.
On 15 July 1901, Merton presented East Cliff Hall to his wife as a gift on her 66th birthday. This was the same year that Queen Victoria died, making the house one of the last Victorian buildings ever built.
Picture shows East Cliff Hall in 1907.