AN APPEAL to restore a historic Pinner building has been left in turmoil after it failed to secure £1million in lottery funding for the second time running.

Campaigners had hoped to use the money to transform West House in West End Lane, Pinner, into a modern art gallery and museum with a cafe and restaurant.

But friends of the appeal are not giving up and are urging more people to donate to the cause.

Martin Verden, chairman of The Harrow Heritage Trust, said: "It was a pity we didn't get the grant but we are now looking at different ways.

"We will continue to hold events to raise money and would be very grateful if the generous public could continue to show their support."

In 2001, The West House and Heath Robinson Museum Trust, a registered charity, was set up to make sure the project went ahead. It has been working with The Pinner Association to assist in the development of the project but this was the second failed application made to Heritage Lottery Fund.

The house is now expected to open in stages. Members of the public will be invited to visit the ground floor first which will become home to Pinner's Book of Remembrance, a record of all those who died during the World Wars, and around 600 paintings from the William Heath Robinson Trust Collection.

Mr Heath Robinson was a former Pinner resident (1872-1944) and is famous for his cartoons of mad and inventive machines. The second floor will open next as office space with rent money going to the charity.

Mr Verden said: "We are looking at ways of reducing costs. We are not lowering standards but we need to raise enough money to carry out the vital works.

"It is not yet known how much is still needed to finish the work but we are in meetings and discussing where to go next."

In a letter from the Heritage Lottery Fund it explained there had been many applications but it could not offer a grant.

Patrons of the trust include comedy writer Barry Cryer, television presenter and Pinner resident Bob Holness and actor David Suchet.

The house is also the former home of Nelson Ward, the grandson of Admiral Lord Nelson, and is the only estate in Pinner which still exists in its medieval size and shape.

* To make a donation, write to: The Old Coach House, 179 Moss Lane, Pinner, HA5 3AL.