Ingestre Hall, Staffordshire - taken from my favourite place next door - the golf course!


Ingestre Hall is a Grade II* 17th-century mansion built in 1613 on the site of an earlier manor house for Sir Walter Chetwynd, the then High Sheriff of Staffordshire. The hall was designed in the Jacobean architectural style, characterized by its symmetrical facades, ornate detailing, and mullioned windows.

Later in 1717, his grandson, also named Walter was created Viscount Chetwynd. The daughter and heiress of the 2nd Viscount married the Hon. John Talbot in 1748 and their son John Chetwynd-Talbot inherited the Ingestre estate.

The house was renovated in the early 19th century by architect John Nash for the 2nd Earl, Charles Chetwynd-Talbot. In 1856 the 3rd Earl and 3rd Viscount Ingestre, Henry John Chetwynd-Talbot, succeeded a distant cousin to become the 18th Earl of Shrewsbury. The hall was badly damaged by fire and largely rebuilt in 1882 using the designs of the Adelphi, London based architect, John Birch. It is probably no coincidence and most likely as a consequence of the fire, that electricity was installed soon after in 1886.

In the 19th century, Ingestre Hall became a hub for artistic and cultural activities. Richard Seymour-Conway, the 4th Marquess of Hertford, established an art school within the premises, which attracted notable artists such as Sir Edwin Landseer, John Constable, and Charles Barry. It is said that the Hall’s elegant surroundings and picturesque landscapes inspired their creative work.

In the early 20th century, Lord Shrewsbury became the Chairman of the Clement TALBOT Company famed for establishing the name “The invincible Talbot” and producing a car that achieved the record for 100 miles in an hour at Brooklands on February 8th 1913.

Ingestre Hall was the home of Sir John Lubbock, a composer and conductor. He organized many musical events and performances within the Hall, contributing to its reputation as a cultural haven.

During World War II, Ingestre Hall was used as a military hospital and after the war, the hall faced a period of neglect and deterioration. However, efforts were made to restore and preserve the building’s historic features.

Like many historic buildings, Ingestre Hall has its share of ghost stories and legends. It is rumored to be haunted by the spirit of Mary Chetwynd, a former resident who died tragically. Visitors and staff have reported various paranormal experiences and sightings over the years.

The Ingestre estate of 1,100 acres was broken up in 1960 when sold off by the 21st Earl and the West Bromwich Borough Council, later to become part of Sandwell MBC, purchased the Hall in 27 acres. The 1961 sale stipulated that the hall “must be used for the purpose of promoting the arts and education” and it now hosts schools and youth groups for children between 7 and post 16 and providing enrichment of education and life experiences for the young through the creative arts.

I did contact the Hall to see if I could film inside but was told it was not open to the general public and access was denied… A Shame that!

MUSIC: Effervescence by Scott Buckley

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