The History of Stoneacre

Stained glass panel of a rabbit

A medieval yeoman's house that has been restored and was originally saved from destruction by Arts and Crafts scholar, Aymer Vallance.

When Aymer Vallance took on Stoneacre in 1920 his wife described it as 'practically a ruin'. After years of neglect, Stoneacre had fallen into disrepair. Together with his architect, Vallance set about restoring the dilapidated house into the charming property that it is today.

Building a hidden gem

Stoneacre's early years are bound with the Ellys family, whose relatives would give their name to Ellis island, the gateway for millions of immigrants to the United States.

The oldest parts of the house that we see today were built by John Ellys but unfortuantely we know very little about him. The hall house itself was built in the 1480's, and there is a very important reason as to why Stoneacre was originally built here. There are four buildings nearby which we believe were all built in strategic loactions for the 15th century quarry masters to keep a watchful eye over their precious resource.

The Ellys family looked after Stoneacre until the early 18th century, forced to sell after faring badly in the civil war and finding themselves in financial turmoil. For nearly two centuries after, the house was owned by farmers and eventually fell into disrepair until Aymer Vallance restored Stoneacre in 1920.


The house

Most of John Ellys' original hall-house remains to this day. Our downstairs rooms: the Hall and Parlour; and the upstairs Solar are open for you to visit. Our friendly room guides will tell you the history of this fascinating building.
With some of the most beautiful 17th-century furniture, soft furnishing, glass and decorative metal work, a visit to Stoneacre, is a must for any fine art lover. 


The collections

Aymer Vallance, the last private owner of Stoneacre and a biographer of Arts and Crafts designer William Morris, was a great collector of medieval sculpture and woodwork. He was also particularly fond of stained glass and most rooms have beautiful collections of glass designed by him.