Wentworth Woodhouse

Historic Site/Structure

Description

Wentworth Woodhouse is a Grade I listed stately home in South Yorkshire, with the longest façade of any country house in England. It stands in 87 acres of gardens and grounds and has extensive views over former parkland, including a deer park and lakes, which are vested in the Fitzwilliam Wentworth Amenity Trust.

Wentworth Woodhouse was built for the 1st Marquess of Rockingham from circa 1735, the work continuing over four decades, and then passed to the Fitzwilliam family. During World War II, the mansion was taken over for use by Military Intelligence and after 1945, the onset of open cast coalmining in the garden and park, made it impossible for the family to return. The greater part of the house was let in 1947 to West Riding County Council, on a long lease, shortly before the death of the 8th Earl Fitzwilliam, in a plane crash in 1948. The house was used as a Women’s Physical Education College for training teachers.

Following local government reorganisation in 1974, Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council became the lessee and the property was taken over as a student campus, for Sheffield Polytechnic College (now Sheffield Hallam University). Faced with mounting costs, Rotherham paid to surrender the lease in 1988. The house and 87 acres of grounds and parkland, were sold to W.G. Haydon-Baillie, in 1989. In 1998, the property went back onto the open market and was bought by the Newbold family in 1999, who continued in residence until 2017, when the property was purchased by Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust, on behalf of the nation.

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