A WINCHESTER building that has been owned and occupied by the same family for more than century has opened to the public following an extensive refurbishment.

Chesil House is based on Chesil Street, an important approach into Winchester since the Middle Ages, and lines the River Itchen. Owned by the Steel family, it has been described as a 'real oasis in the otherwise bustling city centre'.

The house has long been at the heart of the Steel family's Winchester business operations, serving as head office, service rooms and general storage.

Now, after years of planning and months of restoration work to reflect the long heritage associated with the site, along with contemporary touches, Chesil House has been transformed.

The introduction of fully managed, state-of-the-art audio visual facilities, along with catering from local award-winning partners Little Kitchen Company, mean it can now act as a riverside location for services, events, corporate functions and family gatherings.

Iain Steel, a fourth generation businessman in the family and supporter of a number of local charities, invested heavily in the changes.

He said: "My family have served the city and wider Hampshire community for nearly 160 years, this regeneration of our 19th century building gives people a unique venue with unrivalled views of our private garden and the River Itchen."