Robert Louis Stevenson moved with his family to Bournemouth in 1884, and the following year they moved into ‘Seaview’, a house in Westbourne, which was renamed ‘Skerryvore’ after the lighthouse that his uncle Alan had built in 1844. It was whilst he was living in Westbourne that he wrote the ‘Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde’, published in 1886, with the character Mr Poole named after the neighbouring town. After years of ill health, he left Bournemouth in 1887.
‘Skerryvore’ was destroyed in November 1940 by a German air raid, the only building to be hit.
In the 1950s a memorial garden was created with a stone model of Skerryvore Lighthouse.
The plaque reads:
This garden was designed and constructed by the Bournemouth Corporation in 1957 as a memorial to Robert Louis Stevenson who occupied the house on this site from Aptil 1885 until August 1887. The house, whih was destroyed by enemy bombing on 16th November 1940, was named after the Skerryvore Lighthouse built by the Stevenson family firm on the Argyle coast and from which this model is copied.
Stevenson wrote many books whilst residing at “Skerryvore”, including “Kidnapped” and “The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde”.
The road opposite the garden is aptly named R L Stevenson Avenue.