DiCamillo Companion
England

Stanmer House (Stanmer Park)

  • Earlier Houses: The current 18th century house was built around an ealier house.

    Built / Designed For: Henry Pelham (died 1725); finished for Thomas Pelham.

    House & Family History: The Pelham family purchased the Stanmer Estate in 1712 from the Gotts and began the building of the current Roman-pedimented villa style house in the 1720s. The Pelhams, later elevated to the peerage as earls of Chichester, were one of the great Whig families, dominating Sussex politics and casting a large shadow on the national stage. The House, of Wealden sandstone, was completed circa 1727 and cost £14,203 1s. 5 1/2d. and features a Garden Facade of nine bays and an eight-bay East Facade (the Entrance Facade) with a pedimented three-bay central projection and one asymmetrical bay, added in 1860. Circa 1812 Joseph Kay designed, for the 2nd Earl of Chichester, a tent-roofed veranda, an attic balustrade, a balcony on the north side, a four-bay giant Ionic colonnade closing the courtyard behind the House, and a closed-in porch, of which only the porch stands today. The House and Park were purchased by Brighton Council in 1947 and in 1961 became the administrative headquarters of the University of Sussex (the university built its modern campus on part of the former park). In 2006, after an extensive restoration, the House reopened for use as an event venue. The name derives from stony mere, which referred to the stones around the village pond.

    Collections: The contents of Stanmer House were sold by Sotheby's on June 30, 1950.

  • Garden & Outbuildings: On the hillside to the south of the House is the Frankland Monument, a Coade Stone structure that rests on three turtles; it was designed by Richard Hayward in 1775.

    Chapel & Church: The Church of 1838, adjacent to the village pond, is of flint with stone dressings, lancet windows, and a tower with a recessed spire. It was built on the site of a 14th century building, and, though its architect cannot be absolutely assigned, it seems likely to have been Joseph Butler of Chichester or Ralph Joanes of Lewes.

  • Architect: Joseph Kay

    Date: Circa 1812
    Designed: Attic balustrade, closed-in porch, tent-roofed veranda, balcony on North Façade, 4-bay Ionic colonnade closing courtyard, all for Thomas Pelham, 2nd Earl of Chichester. Of these only the porch survives.

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    Architect: Richard Hayward

    Date: 1775
    Designed: The Coade Stone Frankland Monument

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    Architect: Joseph Butler

    Date: 1838
    Designed: May have designed Church
    (Attribution of this work is uncertain)
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    Architect: Ralph Joanes

    Date: 1838
    Designed: May have designed Church
    (Attribution of this work is uncertain)
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    Architect: Nicholas Dubois

    Date: Circa 1722-27
    Designed: House for Henry Pelham

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  • John Bernard (J.B.) Burke, published under the title of A Visitation of the Seats and Arms of the Noblemen and Gentlemen of Great Britain and Ireland, among other titles: 2.S. Vol. I, p. 192, 1854.

    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: Vol. IV, 1821.

    Country Life: LXXI, 14, 66 [Furniture], 1932.

  • Title: Pevsner Architectural Guides: Brighton and Hove
    Author: Antram, Nicholas; Morrice, Richard
    Year Published: 2008
    Reference: pgs. 208, 210, 211
    Publisher: New Haven: Yale University Press
    ISBN: 9780300126617
    Book Type: Softback

  • House Listed: Grade I

    Park Listed: Grade II

  • Past Seat / Home of: Gott family, until 1712. Thomas Pelham, 1st Earl of Chichester, 18th century.

    Current Ownership Type: Government

    Primary Current Ownership Use: Conference Center

    Ownership Details: Stanmer House is owned by Brighton & Hove Council and leased by them to Cherrywood Ltd., who let the House for auctions, corporate functions, weddings, banquets, and seminars.

  • House Open to Public: By Appointment

    Phone: 01273-680-400

    Email: info@stanmerhouse.co.uk

    Website: http://www.stanmerhouse.co.uk

    Historic Houses Member: No