Mary Ann Fetherstonhaugh

Lady Fetherstonhaugh (Mary Ann Bullock) by R. N. C. Ubsdell

Mary Ann Bullock came to Uppark as a dairy maid, but when Sir Harry heard the sound of singing coming from the dairy, he presented himself at the door and told the 20-year old Mary Ann that he wanted to marry her.

Leaving her speechless, Sir Harry - 51 years her senior - told her:

" Don't answer me now. But if you will have me, cut a slice out of the leg of mutton that is coming up for my dinner today."
- Sir Harry Fetherstonhaugh's marriage proposal, 1825

When the mutton arrived, the slice was cut.  Unconventional the proposal may have been, but the marriage lasted until Sir Harry's death in 1846, aged 90.

Now the owner of an estate totalling some 5,149 acres and employing 203 labourers (as of 1851), the new Lady Fetherstonhaugh and her sister, Frances, resisted the temptation to restyle Uppark to suit the incoming Victorian tastes.

Instead, during the 1850s some rooms received new satin flock wallpaper, paintwork is renewed, ceilings redecorated, panelling "twice oiled and flatted in white", and the Servants Hall and Housekeeper's room repainted. In the 1860s, the windows were re-glazed, the hot water boiler replaced, a new kitchen range installed and downstairs pipework renewed.

The house continued to be a sociable one with shooting parties and honeymoons for friends and family. Lady Fetherstonhaugh created several charities, provided funds to support the village church, and on her death in 1874 she left Uppark to her sister, Frances, who assumed the Fetherstonhaugh name.

Mary Ann left Uppark to her sister, Frances Fetherstonhaugh (née Bullock)
Frances Bullock, Uppark, West Sussex
Mary Ann left Uppark to her sister, Frances Fetherstonhaugh (née Bullock)

Towards the end of her life, Miss Fetherstonhaugh tried to find a suitable blood relation of Sir Harry Fetherstonhaugh, but without success. Instead, she bequeathed Uppark to Lt. Col. The Hon. Keith Turnour, who assumed the name Fetherstonhaugh on her death in 1895, and during whose time the kitchens were relocated to the basement.