Discover Lower Brockhampton Manor House

view of timber framed great hall from minstrels granary

The manor house at Brockhampton will reopen from Wednesday 19 May. It will be open to explore five days a week and will be closed on Mondays and Tuesdays and open every day during school holidays. Brockhampton manor is a rare survival of a medieval manorial complex, which may also have once included a small village.

Read on to discover more about the measures we've put in place to keep everyone safe. Don't forget to book your tickets through the What's On section of our website before visiting. 

  • We're currently operating a timed ticket system for the manor house between 10:30am and 12pm; you cannot book these tickets in advance, but they will be available on a first come, first served basis and can be picked up at Visitor Reception on arrival. After midday, you will not need a ticket but may be asked to queue for five minutes to allow others space. 
  • There is a one-way system around the house; please follow the directional signage provided. There are some smaller rooms that you will be able to see inside but not go into due to social distancing restrictions. 
  • Please avoid touching any surfaces and keep a safe distance from others while exploring the house. 
  • In line with government guidance, you will be required to wear a face mask while inside the manor house; please bring one with you. 

The manor was completed around 1425 for the Domulton family and was built using giant timbers cut from the estate. During the first half of the 16th century, it was owned by the Habingtons.  In 1552 Mary Habington married Richard Barnaby, in whose family the house remained for the next four hundred years.

Archaeological digs near the manor house in 2012 uncovered a network of stone walls, indicating that a village, most likely the lost village of Studmarsh, may once have been situated here.

The moat and chapel were built by the family a little later, around 1540 as a symbol of status and wealth. We think even today it still has the ‘wow factor’ as you follow the driveway and first lay eyes on the impressive setting.

The medieval manor house at Brockhampton
Brockhampton manor house
The medieval manor house at Brockhampton

Around 1700, Richard Barneby added a two-storey stone and red brick extension to the manor as what was a once an impressive manor was now on the small side and rather dated in comparison to the impressive red brick Georgian mansions which had fallen into favour with the well-to-do. When Richard’s son, Bartholomew inherited the estate in 1731 he commissioned a new survey of the estate by John Perkins but it wasn’t until 1765 he commissioned Shrewsbury architect Thomas Farnolls Pritchard to design him a new home on the estate.

A side view of the manor house and chapel
The ruined chapel stands near Lower Brockhampton Manor
A side view of the manor house and chapel

After Bartholomew relocated to his new fashionable red brick home, Brockhampton manor became a modest farmhouse, occupied by tenants and was quietly forgotten. This benign neglect prevented damaging modernisation and by the late nineteenth century such romantic fragments of Olde England had come back into fashion. In the late 1860s John Habington-Lutley consulted the antiquarian architect J.C Buckler, who supervised the sympathetic restoration of Lower Brockhampton Manor.

The manor was bequeathed to the National Trust in 1946 with no surviving heir to the estate, Brockhampton was a rare and picturesque survival of a vanished age. When you visit Brockhampton manor you’ll see each room is set-up to reflect a time in its history so why not come and enjoy nearly six hundred years of history all under one roof?

Ross on Wye Arts Society

In 2015 the Ross on Wye Arts Society was asked by the National Trust to make an embroidered wall hanging for Bartholomew Barnaby’s room.  It was to be in wool and in the style of works in 18th century and would portray Brockhampton’s ‘spirit of place’ with farming, fruit, orchards and gentry all tied within its design.

A group of five volunteers started designing and working samples. They used Crewel (2 ply) wool and the fabric is a linen twill woven by a weaver in Montrose, Scotland.

The Brockhampton tapestry took four years to create.
A sewing volunteer creating the tapestry
The Brockhampton tapestry took four years to create.

The design is based on the tree of life with traditional crewel design elements. It depicts images of the working life on the estate, in 17th – 18th century, the Ryeland sheep, Hereford cattle, bees, and the 16th century gate house, built to impress, over the moat.

The work took four years to complete, meeting weekly. On behalf of the National Trust, Brockhampton would like to thank Maureen Blunden, Thea Cox, Ann Hay, Freda Jefferson and Carol Wells for their hard work and dedication to creating such a fantastic piece, which can now be seen by visitors. Take a look when you’re next here and see what pictures you can depict whilst taking in this wonderful hand-crafted piece.