The future of Castle Drogo, the last castle to be built in England, is secured after a complex nine-year project.

The repair of the castle presented a major challenge which cost a total of £15.5million.

Castle Drogo was built between 1911 and 1931, by the renowned architect Edwin Lutyens. It was built for Julius Drewe, a food retailing magnate, whose dream was to create an imposing ancestral home situated on a granite outcrop overlooking Dartmoor that would appear to have existed for hundreds of years.

However, the castle had suffered major structural problems ever since its completion which resulted in serious leaks and water penetration throughout the building.

In order to install the new roof system, more than 3000 granite blocks weighing anything up to 1.4 tonnes have been removed and then returned. Some 913 windows containing over 13,000 panes have been refurbished to stop them leaking and more than 60,000 metres of pointing have been replaced.

READ NEXT: Once-in-a-generation opportunity as East Devon farm seeks tenant

The National Trust said the repairs would not have been possible without the massive support of the public and individual donors who raised more than £800,000 to support the project alongside funding from The National Lottery Heritage Fund, Interreg, the Department of Culture Media and Sport through the Culture Recovery Fund and others.

Tim Cambourne, National Trust project manager said: “The distinctive nature of the original construction and design at Castle Drogo required a unique solution to deal with the fabric issues.

South West Farmer:

"We have now installed a high-tech roof system over an area roughly equivalent to two football pitches. A new two-layer membrane, designed to cope with the extremes of weather experienced on Dartmoor, now works alongside newly designed roof gullies to accommodate the heavy Dartmoor rainfall, protecting the castle from water damage.

"This, alongside the work that’s taken place to repoint the entire building and refurbish all 913 windows, represents conservation work on a monumental scale.”

During a conservation project of such enormous scale and complexity there have been plenty of surprises thrown at the project team who have had to overcome a variety of construction related issues and the very special kind of weather, only experienced in a location as high and as exposed as at Castle Drogo.

Indoors the house and conservation team have completed the mammoth task of cleaning, putting carpets and blinds back and, most importantly, uncovering the collection to return the castle to a family home and bring to life the Lutyens-designed masterpiece, as well as the lives of the Drewe family who it was created for.

Ben Dale, collections and house manager, said, “Reaching the end of this landmark project has given us the opportunity to open previously unseen areas inside the castle and re-display the whole interior in line with historic decorative schemes. It’s wonderful to see the castle looking its best and we’re looking forward to an exciting programme of conservation and curation over the next few years.”