The second house from a circa 1895 postcard
The ruins of the first house from a 1905 postcard
Earlier Houses: A circa 1490 house, with 16th and 17th century alterations and additions, was the birthplace of Lady Jane Grey (1537-54), who was queen of England for nine days before being overthrown and executed by Mary I. In 1696 William III visited Bradgate. The House was abandoned in 1719, after which it slowly slipped into decay. The ruins of the House, today a Scheduled Ancient Monument, is one of the earliest brick buildings in Leicestershire and an early example of a country house built without defenses. The ruins of the House, together with the watermill and the formal garden, are visible today at the center of the Park.
Built / Designed For: 7th Earl of Stamford
House & Family History: The 19th century Bradgate House was a calendar house: it had 365 windows, 52 rooms, and 12 chimneys.
Garden & Outbuildings: In 1928 Bradgate Park was sold by the heirs of the Grey family to Charles Bennion, who, in conjunction with Leicester County Council, settled ownership of the Park in a trust to be managed “in perpetuity as an open space or public park for the purposes of recreation” for the people of Leicestershire. There is a fine folly in the Park known as Old John; built in 1784 by the 5th Earl of Stamford, it sits on top of the highest hill in the Park. The Grade II*-listed 19th century Jacobean style Stables (which accommodated 50 horses) and Kennels are ruinous.
House Listed: Demolished
Park Listed: Grade II
Past Seat / Home of: SEATED AT EARLIER HOUSE: Thomas Grey, 1st Marquess of Dorset, late 15th century; Thomas Grey, 2nd Marquess of Dorset, 16th century; Henry Grey, 1st Duke of Suffolk and 3rd Marquess of Dorset (father of Lady Jane Grey), 16th century; Henry Grey, 1st Earl of Stamford, 17th century; Thomas Grey, 2nd Earl of Stamford, until 1720. SEATED AT 19TH CENTURY HOUSE: George Harry Grey, 7th Earl of Stamford and 3rd Earl of Warrington, 1856-83; Grey family here until 1926.
Current Ownership Type: Preservation Organization
Primary Current Ownership Use: Public Park
Ownership Details: Owned by Bradgate Park Trust and operated as a public park