DiCamillo Companion

Godmersham Park

  • Earlier Houses: There was an earliler house on the site of the current house.

    Built / Designed For: Thomas Brodnax-May-Knight

    House & Family History: In 1797 Edward Austen Knight, Jane Austen's third-eldest brother, inherited Godmersham and changed his surname to Knight. Edward lived here until 1852, during which time Jane and her sister Cassandra were frequent guests. It's virtually certain that Jane used Godmersham as the model for the great English country house in her novels, most particularly in "Mansfield Park," where Godmersham is architecturally identifiable. The Tritton family owned the Godmersham Estate from the early 20th century until its sale in 1983 to Sunley Construction, together with 3,000 acres. On July 18, 2017, 100 years to the day since the death of Jane Austen, the Bank of England unveiled a new £10 polymer banknote featuring a portrait of the author, complete with a drawing of Godmersham Park in the background. With this new banknote, Austen will be the only woman – other than the queen – to be featured on an English banknote currently in circulation.

    Collections: The contents of Godmersham Park were sold at Christie's in June of 1983.

  • John Preston (J.P.) Neale, published under the title of Views of the Seats of Noblemen and Gentlemen in England, Wales, Scotland, and Ireland, among other titles: 2.S. Vol. III, 1826.

    Country Life: XLVIII, 596, 1920. XCVII, 288, 332, 376, 1945.

  • 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 I

    Park Listed: Grade II

  • Past Seat / Home of: SEATED AT EARLIER HOUSE: Birdnax family. SEATED AT CURRENT HOUSE: Thomas Brodnax-May-Knight, 18th century; Edward Austen Knight, 1797-1852. Tritton family, circa 1905-1983.

    Current Ownership Type: School

    Primary Current Ownership Use: School

    Ownership Details: Today the Association of British Dispensing Opticians College

  • House Open to Public: No

    Historic Houses Member: No