The house from an 1894 photograph
A late 19th century lithograph of the hall from Joseph Nash's "Interiors of Old English Mansions"
Earlier Houses: There was at least one earlier house on, or near, the current house.
Built / Designed For: Sir John Norreys
House & Family History: The manor at Ockwells was granted by Henry III in 1267 to Richard le Norreys, chief cook to Queen Eleanor (Eleanor of Castile, first wife of Edward I). Le Norreys's descendant, Sir John Norreys, keeper of the wardrobe to Henry VI, began building the current house in 1446. Ockwells is noted for the exceptional 15th century heraldic stained glass in the windows of the great hall, described as the best pre-Reformation domestic glass in England, which Sir John inserted to showcase his Lancastrian connections. Oliver Cromwell spent time at Ockwells during the Civil War. One of the most notable tenants at Ockwells was Sir Thomas Day, who was informally knighted by Queen Anne for his courtesy to her in the hunting field. Ockwells was also one of the meeting places of the infamous Hell Fire Club. In 2019 Ockwells Manor, together with 42 acres, was listed for sale for £10 million.
Comments: Nikolaus Pevsner called Ockwells "the most refined and the most sophisticated timber-framed mansion in England."
Country Life: XV, 486, 1904. LV, 52, 92, 130, 1924. LXX, 53 [Furniture], 1931.
House Listed: Grade I
Park Listed: Not Listed
Past Seat / Home of: SEATED AT EARLIER HOUSE: Richard le Norreys, 13th century. SEATED AT CURRENT HOUSE: Sir John Norreys, 1448-66; Sir William Norreys, 15th century. Sir Thomas Fettiplace, 16th century. Sir Francis Englefield, 16th century. Sir Thomas Day, 17th century. Finche family, here from the 17th century until the 18th century. Powney family, until 1801. Charles Pascoe Grenfell, 19th century. Sir Stephen Leech, 19th century. Sir Edward Barry, until 1949. Brian Stein, until 2021.
Current Ownership Type: Individual / Family Trust
Primary Current Ownership Use: Private Home
House Open to Public: No
Historic Houses Member: No