TL4301 : Copped Hall

taken 9 years ago, near to Upshire, Essex, Great Britain

This is 1 of 3 images, with title Copped Hall in this square
Copped Hall
Copped Hall
Copped Hall or Copthall is a ruined country house close to Epping in Essex,
The main house was gutted in an accidental fire one Sunday morning in 1917. Popular legend has it that the fire was started by Army staff who were billetted at Copped Hall during World War I (when it was used as a hospital). Members of the hospital staff were on the roof to view the destruction of a German Zeppelin over Grays in Essex, and the fire is said to have started there due to a carelessly discarded cigarette.

The truth is that the fire was started accidentally by members of the house, and due to the lack of local firemen who were away at war the house was completely gutted. Although much of what was inside was removed in time the roof collapsed and the blaze took 36 hours to bring under control.

The Wythes family, who were the then occupiers, moved in to Wood House on the estate to await Copped Hall's rebuilding. This never happened and Ernest Wythes died in 1949. His wife died in 1951. In 1952 the estate was sold, after which followed a period of total neglect. The main 18th-century house was first stripped of its more desirable building materials then left to deteriorate. The Italianate conservatory was blown up using dynamite to demolish it, though some of the statues and stonework were removed to other large estate houses. The stone gazebo from the garden was set up in the grounds of St Paul's Waldenbury, a neighbouring estate. Some of the statues in the gardens were removed to Anglesey Abbey in Cambridgeshire.

The house and surrounding estate is now owned by the Copped Hall Trust, who acquired the freehold of the main house, stables and gardens in 1995.

The English publication Country Life ran a full article on the charms of Copped Hall with many photographs published before the devastating fire. This perhaps remains as the only record of the house in its heyday.

On 27 April 2004 Charles, Prince of Wales, accompanied by the Lord Lieutenant of Essex - Lord Petre, visited Copped Hall and inspected the restoration work of the Copped Hall Trust. The Prince opened an exhibition of 18th century botanical water-colours in the new temporary gallery. These water-colours were painted by Matilda Conyers, a descendant of John Conyers.
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Grid Square
TL4301, 82 images   (more nearby search)
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Date Taken
Tuesday, 9 July, 2013   (more nearby)
Friday, 19 July, 2013
Geographical Context
Country estates 
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TL 4303 0151 [10m precision]
WGS84: 51:41.6474N 0:4.0812E
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TL 4423 0128
View Direction
WEST (about 270 degrees)
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