TQ2524 : Wykehurst Park

taken 3 years ago, near to Bolney, West Sussex, Great Britain

This is 1 of 2 images, with title Wykehurst Park in this square
Wykehurst Park
Wykehurst Park
Completed in 1874, funded by Henry Huth, a banker and MP, and designed by EM Barry son of the designer of the Houses of Parliament in the style of a French chateau. Huth was to enjoy his dream home for just 4 years as he died in 1878 and the estate was inherited by his son Edward and remained in the family until they sold up in 1925. By the 1930s the house had become a country hotel and was requisitioned by the military during the Second World War who billeted Canadian troops in both the main building and surrounding parkland. Between 1945-71 the property remained empty and gradually began to deteriorate with trees growing inside whilst the only inhabitants were a herd of cows. After 15 years of trying to purchase the property and with a demolition order looming the building was finally obtained by James Doyle, an antique collector and leader of the Racial Preservation Society, an anti-immigration group which later became part of the National Front.

During the late 1960s and 70s the house's gothic looks became popular with film makers and starred in Richard Attenborough's 'Oh What a Lovely War' , three Hammer horror films including The Legend of Hell House, two Michael Caine films - The Black Windmill and The Eagle has Landed, and Holocaust 2000 starring Kirk Douglas. It was also used as a location for the 1970s Cinzano adverts starring Leonard Rossiter and Joan Collins and music videos for Landscape's 'Norman Bates', see LinkExternal link and Robin Gibb's 'Juliet', see LinkExternal link as well as providing the cover for Toyah's 1980 album, the Blue Meaning, see LinkExternal link By 1981 Doyle wanted something smaller and sold out to Ebrahim Golestan, an Iranian film maker who had left his home country in 1978, marking a full turn of the wheel as Huth had originally been an ardent Orientalist who could speak fluent Persian. The new owner's desire for privacy meant the end of the property's career as a film set in 1984 returning the house to a quiet, peaceful country residence.

The grounds which were built up over the last quarter of the 19th century were reduced after 1945 with parts of the estate broken up and sold to the owners of both East and West Lodges and The Coach House.
Bolney, West Sussex :: TQ2623
Bolney is a parish in mid Sussex bounded by Twineham to the south, Cuckfield to the east, Slaugham to the north and Cowfold to the west. The parish rises from the south as it hits the slopes of the High Weald with the northern part far more wooded than its southern counterpart. Likewise, many of the streams head south and are part of the eastern Adur watershed. The soil is clay with an underbed of sandstone, much quarried and used as a local building material.

Settlement wise Bolney is a characteristically Wealden parish with one main village and a large number of farms spread out over the area. The village name derives from the Saxon for Bolla’s Island due to its original location near marshy ground. An old Saxon oak walkway was discovered near the village pond and dated back to 972. Bolney village grew up along its main street and up until the 20th century occupied the southern part of the street. At the northern end of the street was Bolney Common where another separate settlement grew up around its fringes. The old street itself continued northwards into the old forests of the High Weald where early industrial activity such as charcoal burning were carried out and later iron smelting in neighbouring Slaugham, both utilising the heavy wooded areas of the north. The common was enclosed in 1841 with much of the land bounded by The street, Top Street and Ryecroft Road eventually built upon. In addition development began occurring between Bolney and Bolney Common and eventually joined together in the 20th century producing one distinct village called Bolney.

To the south west of the village at a crossroads was another small hamlet called Crosspost straddling the north-south route from Twineham to Warninglid and a minor east-west route from the village to the outlying farms. In 1808 a new London-Brighton turnpike was constructed which bypassed the village to the east and would eventually become the A23. Another new road was added in 1825 when a new east-west turnpike was constructed to the south of the village, this later became the A272. Many of the older north-south droveways still exist as quiet country lanes; to the west is Wineham Lane forming the western boundary up to the A272 where it continues northwards as Spronketts Lane to Warninglid; Bolney Chapel Road is the highway from Twineham and continues north of Crosspost as Foxhole lane then Cross Colwood Lane before it heads west to Spronketts Lane, though Colwood lane branches northwards heading to Cuckfield lane east of Warninglid; The Street was probably an older road from the south but now runs from the A272 to Top Street; to the east Stairbridge Lane heads north from Job’s Corner near Hickstead and continues northwards beyond the A272 as Buncton Lane. East-west routes, until the arrival of the A272, were largely small connecting roads, Lodge Lane between Foxhole Lane and The Street; Jeremy’s Lane between Colwood Lane and the A23. Broxmead Lane heads east from the former Bolney Common then turns north to Slough Green.

Large country houses abound, the most famous being the 19th century Wykehurst Park. Ormonde Hall dates from the 15th century and Homewood House to the 1330s, believed to be one of the oldest dwellings in the county. The latter were probably built with money made from the iron industry prevalent in the woods of Weald between the 15th and 17th centuries. The parish possessed a watermill and a windmill, the former located to the south of the village was demolished in the 1960s leaving behind two large mill ponds. The latter was situated on Bolney Common and was pulled down in 1916 on public safety grounds.
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Grid Square
TQ2524, 26 images   (more nearby )
  (find more nearby)
Date Taken
Friday, 19 September, 2014   (more nearby)
Sunday, 21 September, 2014
Country house   (more nearby)
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TQ 2575 2439 [10m precision]
WGS84: 51:0.3097N 0:12.5449W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TQ 2582 2394
View Direction
NORTH (about 0 degrees)
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