Doom Bar House was built in 1934 for Mr and Mrs Anthony Jeffreys, on land that had formed part of Lower Farm, on Daymer Lane. The builder was Lewis Brown from Wadebridge, who was responsible for many of the houses in Trebetherick; he used concrete blocks in the construction of the early clifftop houses up above Greenaway to ensure that they would withstand Atlantic gales. The land surrounding Doom Bar House was extensive, including Fishing Cove Field which the Jeffreys later donated to the National Trust, and the ground on which Sandy Lodge and Ripcran now stand. The Jeffreys had no children.
Anthony Jeffreys was secretary to the Speaker of the House of Commons. He and his wife Dorothy lived in Cheyne Walk in London, and used to come down to Cornwall on the train for their holidays with their domestic staff. These included Monica Smith, who decided to stay in the area and married Jack Carhart in 1940; they later built Farndon where they brought up their children Ruth and Jamie.
Mr Jeffreys was a tall, thin man, a descendant of Judge Jeffreys. He was quite a difficult man and not very charming towards other people, including his wife, who was a stately but very kindly person. He was a nudist, and had a first-floor balcony or ‘lookout’ built at Doom Bar House facing south towards the beach but with a solid outer wall so that he could sunbathe naked without startling passers-by.
Mrs Dorothy Jeffreys was a musician. She had students to stay at Doom Bar House and taught them with her two Stradivarius violins. From time to time musical soirées were held for around 30 guests, and all donations went to either the RSPB, or St John’s Ambulance or the RSPCA. The annual St Minver Fete was sometimes held in the Doom Bar gardens. Dorothy was a senior member of the Scout Association. She swam in the sea every day. One story has it that her husband, out in his boat one day, completely ignored her request for a lift back from her bathe. She drove a very large car but refused ever to reverse it, creating a problem if she met anyone coming in the opposite direction on Daymer Lane.
Frank Collett was the Jeffreys’ gardener for twenty years. His father was a policeman in Tintagel, and his wife, also Dorothy, was cook to Colonel Le Marchant at Daymer Bay House during the 1920s. Frank used to help out with the harvest at Carlumb on the Wadebridge Road, for the family still farming there.
When new owners bought Doom Bar House in 1984 after the Jeffreys had both died, Frank interviewed them to decide whether they were suitable employers. Fortunately they passed the test, and he continued to look after the garden for another twelve years. He died in 2008, aged 98.
Like many Trebetherick residents, the new owners had first been introduced to the area while on holiday, in the 1970s, having been lent Sanderlings by a neighbour in Surrey, and fell in love with the locality – a glorious unspoilt place sitting in its natural habitat. As they explain to their overseas visitors, they are very keen that the area should be preserved. Their three sons, six grandsons and a granddaughter, all share a love of Cornwall and of Doom Bar House in particular.