DAY TRIP TO IGHTHAM MOTE, SEVENOAKS, KENT
Weather: Sun and cloud, actual temps whilst visiting the estate between 10-12C with a fresh NE breeze. Much colder than we expected.
Where is it?
Mote Road, Ivy Hatch, Sevenoaks, Kent, TN15 0NT – approximately 42 miles from Whitstable, and 37 miles from London.
Originally dating to around 1320, the building’s importance lies in the fact that successive owners effected relatively few changes to the main structure, after the completion of the quadrangle with a new chapel in the 16th century. Nikolaus Pevsner called it “the most complete small medieval manor house in the country”, and it remains an example that shows how such houses would have looked in the Middle Ages. Unlike most courtyard houses of its type, which have had a range demolished, so that the house looks outward, Nicholas Cooper observes that Ightham wholly surrounds its courtyard and looks inward, into it, offering little information externally. (extract from Wikipedia)
Built nearly 700 years ago, this house has seen many changes and been owned by Medieval knights, courtiers to Henry VIII and high society Victorians.
Picturesque courtyard, Great Hall, crypt, Tudor painted ceiling, Grade I listed dog kennel and the private apartments of Charles Henry Robinson, who gave Ightham Mote to the National Trust in 1985.
View from window in the moated manor house towards the stables now converted to cottages. Yes, you can stay here, there is one cottage available for holiday rents. We managed a Tower tour up these amazing circular steps. For magnificent views over the roof tops.
If you can watch Time Team Special 21 – The Ten Million Pound House – you can appreciate the work that went into restoring and conserving this amazingly beautiful historic house.
After the Tower tour, and a light lunch and hot cuppa tea, we changed our shoes to walking boots to wonder through the gardens and possibly a walk of the estate. However the cold got the better of us and time was slipping away, we needed to get home via the M25 before the peak hour traffic, will have to come back another day to do the walks around the estate.
Ightham Mote Medieval Manor House was amazing, really enjoyed our visit, and will definitely be back again in warmer weather.