This is the former Baring (banking) family pad. They abandoned it and moved to Lake House, where the current Baron & Lady Ashburton live.
It is not open for visits (the inside is used for Grange Park Opera), but I wanted to visit its exterior because of the property’s notoriety – it is the reason for the existence of the SAVE – so incensed were certain individuals at John Baring’s intention to pull down the then folly in his garden (some of the house had already been pulled down) that they clubbed together to stop him. And they continue to pledge their efforts in the same vein today. SAVE and SPAB are groups I’d like to join one day, when I have more spare time.
See Matthew Beckett’s Lost Heritage website for me details on the history of The Grange: here.
Word of warning – unless you have a 4×4 or a Volvo (or you don’t care about losing your exhaust), you might want to leave the car at the end of the track and walk the mile or so up to The Grange itself.
From EH’s website:
“Set like a lakeside temple in a landscaped park, The Grange at Northington is the foremost example of the Greek Revival style in England. Created between 1804 and 1809 when William Wilkins encased an earlier house in Classical facades, most strikingly the temple front supported on eight gigantic columns. It provides a stunning backdrop for the opera evenings which take place here in the summer; call 01962 737360 for details.”
When visited: May 2015