The Adyar estate with its historical grounds is truly a blessed place, for many reasons and for Theosophists belonging to the various traditions the world over, but its overall condition leaves a lot to be desired. In order to describe what the current situation looks like one must imagine that when it rains, and in the monsoon period it rains heavily in Tamil Nadu, it is simply not possible to perform any repair-work inside the Headquarters Building. When it pours outside, the rain will certainly cause nuisance inside as well. Regrettably it is a fact that many historically significant buildings are in need of signifficant renovation.
The International President, Mr. Tim Boyd, has indicated that this process of decay must come to a halt changing it into a process of revitalization, innovation and above all renovation. For that reason a 20-year plan has been created.
On the estate there are more than 116 buildings; most of them in a poor state. Important buildings such as Headquarters Building, the Blavatsky Bungalow and Leadbeater Chambers are no exception and urgently need to undergo an extensive reconstruction.
The Adyar archives are currently kept in a section of Headquarters Building under circumstances which are inadequate. Archives need an airconditioned and fully climate controlled space. In order to optimize the settings, professional archivists and other specialists have thoroughly investigated possibilities and presented detailed plans so that very soon the process of improvement can begin.
The archives are currently kept under circumstances, which are inadequate
Where and how to start the renovation is pretty well obvious by now, with emphasis on four sites: the Blavatsky Bungalow, Headquarters Building, Raja House and Leadbeater Chambers. Before any beginning of renovation can be made the financial consequences must be looked into and calculated, realizing that substantial funds are needed. For the different sites different financial sources will be used. In the meantime further decay should at least be halted.
This epic site with its historical and esoteric significance is the international seat of the Theosophical Society-Adyar. This building needs a complete renovation. This will be executed by a contractor and the plans will be drawn by an external expert period. Our team will take care of the supervision. To renovate this particular building and Raja House, which is located under the same roof, at least an amount of US$ 360,000 is required.
All the various sections in the TS-Adyar combined will be approached to give donations for this renowned building. Its renovation will start as soon as sufficient funds are available. To be specific: there are 26 “national sections”, 13 “regional associations”, 13 “presidential agencies” and 7 “lodges” directly attached to Adyar. The smaller ones who have lesser financial possibilities could contribute proportionally. If the larger ones could each donate an amount between US$ 3,000 and US$ 15,000 so that the required amount will be obtained within a few years.
The famous roof of the Headquarters Building
The Blavatsky Bungalow
The Blavatsky Bungalow is the location where annually sessions of the School of the Wisdom are held. This famous site, known to many students from outside India, is in desperate need of a complete overhaul. A thorough inspection revealed that even the foundation of the building needs to be watched in order maintain basic safeguards. The conclusion is that renovation is needed right away. This renovation will be done by a contractor and the plans will be prepared by an external expert under our supervision. For this building an amount of at least US$ 240,000 is necessary. Renovation of the Blavatsky Bungalow is started June 2017 and will be finished probably about summer 2018.
The condition of the Blavatsky Bungalow appears acceptable, but renovation is urgently needed
Through a gift from an English member Leadbeater Chambers was erected in the beginning of the 20th century to accommodate students who came to Adyar. It was the firts reinforced concrete building constructed in India. For this reason it is considered a monumental heritage. The original contractor used sea sand wich contained salt, instead of pure sand, to mix with cement, since which time Leadbeater Chambers has required constant repairs. Originally the building consisted of 30 flats; each one included a sitting room, bedroom and bathroom. This site also needs speedy repair.
Leadbeater Chambers is a reinforced concrete building that urgently needs renovation and modernisation
Leadbeater Chambers, 3 stories high, will be altered into a modern hostel consisting of 56 rooms and 2 suites, all equipped with a modern toilet, bath and shower. Due to the roof-design and the position of the sun, rooms on the top floor will be supplied with air-conditioning, while the quarters on the other 2 floors will be especially designed to stimulate natural ventilation. Photovoltaic cells are going to be installed on the roof to make self-supportive, clean and renewable energy production possible.
The estimated renovation costs are US$ 300,000. To realize these Adyar members, Lodges, private persons or friends of Adyar, who are able and willing to donate US$ 5,000 per room or US$ 10,000 per suite will be approached. In return remembrance plaques above the room entrances are to be installed stating: “In gratitude: the renovation of this room was kindly sponsored by … “
It will possible to donate in installments, making it feasible for the sponsor to pay the total amount over a period of three years. Example: If a sponsor transfers a sum of US$ 140 monthly, the total sum for a room, US$ 5,000 will be reached in 3 years.
Organizing the fundraising
There are three bank accounts, in India (for Asia, South-Pacific, Australia), in the USA (North-, Central-, and South America) and one in the Netherlands (Europe and Africa). These accounts are managed and supervised by the International President and a specially appointed accountant.
Account India: in Indian rupees
- Bank Name: Standard Chartered Bank
- Name of the Branch: Adyar Branch
- Address: “Sorrento”, 6, Lattice Bridge Road, Adyar, Chennai – 600 020,
- India Account name: The Theosophical Society
- Bank Account number: 428-1-000158-2 IF5C Code: SCBL0036080 BIC/SWIFT-code: SCBLINBBXXX
- Country: IN
- Specification: Adyar Estate Development Fund
Account USA: in US$
- Bank: Wheaton Bank and Trust
- Swift code: WBTCUS44
- Account name: Theosophical Society in America
- Account number: 071925389
- Info column: Adyar renovation
Account Europe: in € Euros
- The account number: IBAN NL47RABO0303508523 of Stichting St. Michael Renovation Fund Adyar at Naarden/Netherlands
- BIC = RABONL2U
- Bank: Rabobank
Administration, reporting and transparency
The overall administration and accounting of the monies donated will be done in US$ (American Dollars) Donations can be earmarked, which means that when somebody pays monthly US$ 140 or US$ 5,000 at once and has committed the amount for LBC, the money is administerd under his or her name as donor for LBC.
Target of the fundraising is to collect US$ 1,000,000 within three years, for the first 5-year plan.
Sponsors will regularly receive reports through updates, in which detailed information is passed on regarding the spending of the funds.
For the sake of full transparency, reports concerning the fundraising are of the utmost importance. Each quarter of a year insight will be given about progress and accomplishments. For this goal Newsletters will be issued and this dedicated website will be used.
Funds received and expenditures
Until December 31, 2017, the total of incoming donations were $ 517,352, i.e. including commitments. For the archives we have in the meantime $ 50,592.82.
The conclusion is that, so far, 51,7% of the needed $ 1,000,000 is reached. This means that within two years after the fundraising took off, the 50% mark was surpassed. That is an excellent start and the expectation is that when more projects begin to materialize, the number of donations will increase considerably.
Thanks to all sponsors for their much appreciated donations.
Expenditures Blavatsky Bungalow
For the restoration of Blavatsky Bungalow we have a budget of $ 265,182, plus extra costs for the repair of the foundation of $ 9,450 and electricals $ 15,112 in total a budget of $ 289,744
Until the end of 2017 we spent $ 92,863.54 of the approved budget.