Discovering Westwood Manor

A topiary sculputre shaped like a house at Westwood Manor in Wiltshire

Westwood Manor may be a small, but its homely feel - thanks to the care and attention of its current tenants - and interesting rooms make it a must-see place.

Living history

Built over three centuries from the fifteenth century, and adapted and changed on several occassions in its lifetime, it is the most recent restoration that has had the most impact - thanks to the restorers skills and understanding of medieval, Tudor and Jacobean periods.

In 1911 Edgar 'Ted' Lister bought Westwood Manor and with much attention to detail restored it to its 17th-century glory. Taking back alterations he uncovered original wall panelling, ceiling and even original window glazing hidden underneath plaster.

Find rare instruments in the Music Room of Westwood Manor
View of the music room at Westwood Manor in Wiltshire

The sound of music

The countries earliest Italian keyboard instrument forms part of the collection; a virginal dating from 1537. There is also a spinet, built by Stephen Keene in London, from 1711.

In 2009, with the support of the National Trust and a number of private subscribers, both were restored to full working order and recorded.

" Getting to know an original instrument's particular voice and disposition is immensely rewarding for player and listener alike. In a fascinating and touching way, we become an integral part of that instrument's long history."
- Sophie Yates, musician

Curious topiary

The garden is a tranquil haven with lawns and topiary, and there is little to distract from its peaceful simplicity. Lister created two small pool gardens, now covered in water lilies and home to the rare and protected great-creasted newt.

 
Wander past unusual yew sculptures at Westwood Manor
Yew topiary at Westwood Manor casting long shadows in the sun