DiCamillo Companion

Bayham Abbey (Bayham New Abbey) (Bayham Hall) (Dower House)

  • Earlier Houses: There was at least one earlier house on, or near, the site of the current house.

    Built / Designed For: 3rd Marquess Camden

    Collections: The Camden archives were sold by negotiation to the Kent Record Office in 1986. Sir Thomas Lawrence's "General Sir Charles Stewart, later 3rd Marquess of Londonderry," was sold to the National Gallery for £435,000.

  • Garden & Outbuildings: The remains of Bayham Abbey (see “Images” section), the best surviving example of a Premonstratensian abbey in England, are situated in the park. Founded circa 1208 as a monastery of canons dedicated to the Virgin Mary, the abbey was a community of priests who taught, preached, and performed charitable work for the local community. In 1525 the abbey was dissolved by Cardinal Wolsey and its buildings were abandoned. After Wolsey’s fall from power in 1529, Bayham came into the ownership of the crown; in 1580 Elizabeth I granted the abbey and its estate to Anthony Browne, 1st Viscount Montagu. In 1714 Sir John Pratt purchased the Bayham estate; he and his successors used the ruins of the abbey as a feature, or folly, in the landscape for the next 200 years. In 1961, Sir John’s descendant, John Charles Henry Pratt, 5th Marquess Camden, donated the abbey ruins to the government, which today, under English Heritage, opens the abbey ruins to the public.

  • Architect: David Brandon

    Date: 1870-72
    Designed: House for John Charles Pratt, 3rd Marquess Camden.

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  • Title: No Voice From the Hall: Early Memories of a Country House Snooper
    Author: Harris, John
    Year Published: 1998
    Publisher: London: John Murray
    ISBN: 0719555671
    Book Type: Hardback

    Title: Disintegration of a Heritage: Country Houses and their Collections, 1979-1992, The
    Author: Sayer, Michael
    Year Published: 1993
    Publisher: Norfolk: Michael Russell (Publishing)
    ISBN: 0859551970
    Book Type: Hardback

  • House Listed: Grade II

    Park Listed: Grade II

  • Past Seat / Home of: SEATED AT EARLIER HOUSES: Anthony Browne, 1st Viscount Montagu, circa 1580-92. Sir John Pratt, 1714-25; Charles Pratt, 1st Earl Camden, 1725-94; John Jeffreys Pratt, 2nd Earl Camden and 1st Marquess Camden, 1794-1840; George Charles Pratt, 2nd Marquess Camden, 1840-66; John Charles Pratt, 3rd Marquess Camden, 1866-71. SEATED AT CURRENT HOUSE: John Charles Pratt, 3rd Marquess Camden, 1871-72; John Charles Pratt, 4th Marquess Camden, 1872-1943; John Charles Henry Pratt, 5th Marquess Camden, 1943-76.

    Current Ownership Type: Flat Owners Company / Condo Association

    Primary Current Ownership Use: Flats / Multi Family

    Ownership Details: Bayham New Abbey was divided into flats in 1976

  • House Open to Public: No Access to House - Grounds Open to Public

    Phone: 03703-331-181

    Email: [email protected]

    Website: https://www.english-heritage.org.uk/

    Historic Houses Member: No