Did you know?...

Croome Court and the landscaped 'river' designed and created by Capability Brown

Interesting facts about Croome, the Coventrys and the Parkland

Croome “Did you know?”

Croome George Coventry 9th Earl
Croome George Coventry 9th Earl

Lording it…
The 9th Earl of Coventry holds the record as the longest-serving English peer in the House of Lords – 86 years 302 days.

Trust in me...
In 1921 the Croome Estate Trust (CET) was established by the 9th Earl of Coventry and the entire estate placed in the hands of the Trust. This arrangement remains in place almost 100 years later and Croome Court is now leased by the CET to the National Trust (for 999 years).

A safe bet
The 9th Earl of Coventry holds a record as the owner of Grand National winning horses in successive years – Emblem in 1863 and Emblematic in 1864.

RAF Defford from the air
Croome RAF Defford Aerial photo

Under the Radar
During WWII, radar was first tested and proved at RAF Defford, the secret wartime airbase operating on Croome estate land. Towards the end of the war, the first-ever automatic approach and landing of an aircraft also took place at RAF Defford.

Fit for a King?
In August 1939, just before the outbreak of WWII, Buckingham Palace was in communication about Croome Court being used as a refuge for the British Royal Family should they need to evacuate from London.

Ha Ha at Croome
Croome Ha Ha

We’re not joking
A ha-ha consists of a sunken stone wall, at its top level with the garden, with a deep ditch on the other side to keep out livestock. Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown was a great exponent of the ha-ha and installed over 2 miles of this clever landscape design element at Croome.

Firsts among equals
Lancelot 'Capability' Brown's first landscape design was at Croome. The Long Gallery at Croome was Robert Adam's first complete room design.

Prince Victor Duleep Singh 1897
Prince Victor Duleep Singh 1897

A marriage of inconvenience?
The first interracial marriage between titled families took place between Lady Anne Blanche Alice Coventry and His Highness Victor Albert Jay Duleep Singh on 4 January 1898 in London. Queen Victoria approved the marriage but made it clear the couple should not have children.

I don’t like cricket – I love it!
Charles John Coventry played in the first ever test match between South Africa and England, held in Port Elizabeth on 12-13 March 1889, and England won!

Maria Gunning
Maria Gunning

Beauty is only skin deep
Maria Gunning, the first wife of the 6th Earl of Coventry, was labelled the first victim of fashion when she died age just 27 in 1760, her beauty ravaged from the use of the fashionable white, lead-based makeup.