OLDLANDS HALL

Source: onthemarket.com

Oldlands Hall is the big house on the hill for Fairwarp. The history of the estate and house is extremely interesting, especially in the context of the development of the village.

Brief Description

Much of the 19th-century ornamental gardens have been lost in late-20th-century development of the site and what remains are probably features created during Bernard Eckstein’s ownership in the 1930s and 1940s. Features include an azalea walk, stone lions, and ornamental lily pool and an arboretum.

History

From 1870, gardens and a park of some 12 hectares were developed to the south of the new house under the direction of the head gardener, Edward Luckhurst, `one of the most able and accomplished gardeners of the day’. The estate was extended after 1920, but was then broken up after 1948, and the house was converted into apartments. The house and gardens, now with additional residences, remain in private multiple ownership as Oldlands Estate Ltd.

Detailed Description

Much of the 19th-century ornamental gardens have been lost in late-20th-century development of the site and what remains are probably features created during Bernard Eckstein’s ownership in the 1930s and 1940s. Forty metres north-west from the west side of Oldlands Hall there is an entrance to the Azalea Walk guarded by two stone lions, two further entrances up stone steps being found some 50m and 60m along the drive to the west. The Azalea Walk, an extensive area with rhododendron and azalea glades leading to woodland (now in separate ownership), also features a Japanese-style pavilion (now, 2005, dilapidated) and a pet cemetery dating to the 1920s, enclosed within a yew hedge.

Approximately 10m from the south-east side of the house there are the remains of a rock garden adjoining an ornamental lily pool and, beyond, an arboretum which led along grassy slopes to a chain of lakes (now, 2005, neglected and in separate ownership) some 200m to the east and south-east. On the south side of the house formal stone terraces give views across a ha-ha and surrounding pasture and woodland to Oldlands Farm and beyond. A semi-circular flight of steps lead from the stone terrace to the lower stone-paved walks in terraces with a succession of six lily pools (now, 2005 with little water) to an ornamental pool (now without the deer and fawn fountain described in 1949 Sales Particulars).

Sources

Park & Gardens - https://www.parksandgardens.org/
Article:”Alexander Nesbitt, a Sussex Antiquarian, and the Oldlands estate.” by Janet H. Stevenson.