We were attracted to Wimpole Hall for two reasons - firstly, We were visiting our Godson who is studying Theology at Pembroke College, Cambridge - so we were in the area; and secondly, because it is a fully functioning estate with a farm and thus ideal for gleaning ideas for Willowbrook.
Wimpole Hall is a country house located within the Parish of Wimpole, Cambridgeshire, England, about 8½ miles (14 km) southwest of Cambridge. The house and its 3,000 acres (12 km²) of parkland and farmland are owned by the National Trust and are regularly open to the public.
Before the present Wimpole Hall was built in around 1643, there was a moated manor house set in a 200 acre deer-park. Situated to the north and south of this were three medieval villages: Bennall End, Thresham End and Green End.
Wimpole Hall's grounds were laid out and modified by landscape designers such as George London and Henry Wise (1693–1705), Charles Bridgeman (1720s), Robert Greening (1740s), 'Capability' Brown (1767), and Humphry Repton (1801–1809). The parkland as it exists today is an overlay of the work of these landscape designers and gardeners, and was completed under the auspices of Elsie and George Bambridge. Elsie, the daughter of Rudyard Kipling, revitalised the house. Thanks to her efforts, this National Trust property is in the state it is in today.
Above: In the middle of the 300 foot long facade of the south face is the statue 'Charity' by J H Foley (Of The Albert Memorial Fame).
Below: A deer rampant on the stable block roofline.
The Entrance Hall
The South Drawing Room
The Yellow Drawing Room
The Book Room
The interiors have notable plaster-work on both the ceilings and the walls, much of it due to Sir John Soane...
The Red Room
The Bath Room
The tall wooden apparatus in the photo above was an early, manually filled shower, operated as below...
In the grounds are a chain of lakes (1695–1767), a church (1749), a folly (the false Gothic Tower; 1768), a farm (1792), a walled garden (18th century), and a stable block (1851).
Bridgeman's formal grand avenue sweeps away from the south front of the house for two and a half miles...
The Country Shop
Located in the old stable block...
Offers Gardening items...