The Rendel family at Hatchlands Park

This section of the page features an image gallery, so if you're using a screen reader you may wish to jump to the main content.

Lord Rendel bought Hatchlands Park from the Sumner family in 1888, he made many changes to the house and gardens and his family continued to live here until the late 1950s.

Hatchlands under new management

Stuart Rendel was born in 1834, son of a distinguished engineer. He was educated at Eton and Oxford, qualified as a barrister in 1861 and was eventually elevated to the peerage as Lord Rendel of Hatchlands. He was also a close friend of W. E. Gladstone, the great liberal statesman and four time prime minister, whose bust stands in the inner hall here at Hatchlands.

During his ownership of Hatchlands Lord Rendel made big changes. He constructed a new entrance on the east side, converting what had originally been Admiral Boscawen’s bedroom and dressing room into a dining room and entrance hall. In 1900 he asked influential garden designer Gertrude Jekyll to submit designs for a formal garden that you can still see here today. Then, in 1902, he commissioned Sir Reginald Blomfield to design a music room.

The family tree branches out
The Rendels had four daughters but no sons. Grace Daphne Rendel married Lt. Col. Edward Marten Dunne grandfather of the present Sir Thomas Dunne and Maud Rendel married Herbert Gladstone, the Prime Minister’s son. The eldest daughter Rose Ellen married Harry Goodhart, a Cambridge don and it was their son Harry Stuart who would continue the family’s presence at Hatchlands Park.

Harry Stuart Goodhart-Rendel
‘Hal’ was born in Cambridge in 1887. He studied music at Cambridge but became involved in architecture and he practised as an architect from 1910.

Hal inherited Hatchlands Park from his grandfather in 1913 having added the name Rendel to his own as a condition of the inheritance. He did little to change the main house but used his architectural skills to design the new stable block and the two lodges at the entrance to the park. He is also responsible for the addition of the stone temple to the garden; the inscription it bears is to his mother. Hal gave Hatchlands to the National Trust in 1945 but stayed here until 1959.