Beyond London: Tranquility at Titsey Place and Gardens in Surrey

Welcome along to another one of my trips outside London – where this time I’ll be exploring Titsey Place and Gardens in Oxted, Surrey. The quintessentially English country house is known for being the home of the Gresham and Leveson-Gower families. Today, its delightful splendour is preserved by a charitable trust.  

The house originates from the 16th century and was built by Sir John Gresham who was an English merchant, courtier and financier. He also worked for King Henry VIII, Cardinal Wolsey and Thomas Cromwell – and was Lord Mayor of London as well as being the founder of Gresham’s Schools – an independent day and boarding school in Norfolk. A Tudor style house, it was demolished and rebuilt in the 18th century, before the front of the house was redesigned in 1826.

Titsey Place and Gardens

During the Middle Ages, the Uvedale family owned Titsey, in which time the Uvedale owners were High Sheriffs of Surrey between 1393 and 1464. The 16th century saw the Gresham family have their greatest influence as a result of their power and vast wealth. Sir John Gresham was a rich merchant in the city, which consequently saw him purchase Titsey from the heirs of John Bourchier, 2nd Baron Berners, to whom it had been granted by King Henry VIII. Gresham ended up building a new house there near where the parish church was located.

Titsey Place and Gardens
Titsey Place and Gardens

The house and estate passed through many generations of the Gresham family from Sir John Gresham, William Gresham, Sir Thomas Gresham and Sir Edward Gresham. They were titled Baronets by Charles II at the time of his restoration in 1660. After the heiress of the last Gresham marriage, the house passed to the Leveson Gowers, who were on the family tree of the Dukes of Sutherland.

Titsey Place and Gardens
Titsey Place and Gardens
Titsey Place and Gardens

The 18th century saw the last Gresham baronet demolish and rebuilt a Tudor House, while in 1826 new fronts designed by William Atkinson were installed. By 1856, a tower was added by Philip Charles Hardwick. The gardens of Titsey contain the former parish graveyard and many of the Uvedales are buried there. The Leveson Gowers would remain at Titsey until the death of Thomas Leveson Gower in 1992. Within his Will a charitable trust was set up to preserve the house and gardens, with the remainder of the estate being left to his heir, David Innes – who is the Governor of the charitable trust.

Titsey Place and Gardens
Titsey Place and Gardens
Titsey Place and Gardens

Today the house is noted for its fine collection of family portraits, which are on display throughout the house The works of Sir Joshua Reynolds and Peter Lely are represented, with the dining room containing four paintings of Venice by Canaletto. The antiquarian interior and Georgian style throughout the house restore that traditional feeling that’s been untouched. Unfortunately, photography within the house is prohibited, but when you walk within it, the grand splendour is wonderful to experience – whether that’s the staircase and antiques to the portraits and furniture – you get a real sense of what life was like for the affluent, well-heeled residents.

View from Titsey Place and Gardens
Titsey Place and Gardens
Titsey Place and Gardens

You are however able to explore the gardens, which are sensationally splendid. After World War Two, the gardens were left in a run-down state, but were renovated by Thomas Smith, who planted orchids and grew fruit and vegetables – which are sold to greengrocers in the local area. The kitchen-garden was renovated in 1992 to a more Victorian style and the entire estate is 3,000 acres (1,200 hectares), with miles of woodland walks.

Titsey Place and Gardens
Titsey Place and Gardens

Immersing yourself around the gardens and lake area is pleasantly peaceful with many picturesque sights that wouldn’t look out of place in a painting. The gardens reflect the estate’s stylish, quintessentially English and majestic nature. After you’ve explored the house and gardens, there’s a cute tearoom as well to have a cuppa and a slice of cake!      

Titsey Place and Gardens
Titsey Place and Gardens

Hope you’ve enjoyed joining me on my journey around Titsey Place and Gardens and stay tuned for my next ‘Beyond London’ discovery. Thanks for reading and in the meantime, you can follow all my walks on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube – and don’t forget to sign up to my blog too so you don’t miss a post! Also, why not have a read of my other walks which explore all over London, from north to south, to west to east via central, there’s something there for you – and you can also read my very special walk of San Francisco too – and that’s not all – you can also listen to some of my walks on my London Wlogger podcast.

Here are the links to all my walks and podcasts:

Victoria to Green Park

Marble Arch to Mayfair

The Shard to Monument

King’s Cross to Hampstead Heath

Leadenhall Market to Old Spitalfields Market

Waterloo to The London Eye

St Paul’s Cathedral to Moorgate

Mile End Park to London Fields

Hyde Park Corner to Italian Gardens

Little Venice to Abbey Road

Regent’s Park to Soho Square

Clapham Common to The Albert Bridge

Grosvenor Gardens to Knightsbridge

Holland Park to Meanwhile Gardens

Hackney Downs to Springfield Park

Tower Bridge to Stave Hill

Shoreditch to Islington Green

Highgate to Finsbury Park

Ravenscourt Park to Wormwood Scrubs

Covent Garden to Southwark Bridge

Putney Bridge to Barnes Common

Westminster Abbey to Vauxhall Bridge

Crystal Palace Park to Dulwich Wood

Clapham Junction to Battersea Bridge

Norbury Park to Tooting Commons

Lesnes Abbey Woods to the Thames Barrier

Richmond Green to Wimbledon Common

Chiswick Bridge to Kew Green

Gladstone Park to Fryent Country Park

Whitehall to Piccadilly Circus

Tower of London to the Limehouse Basin

Ham Common to Hampton Court Bridge

The San Francisco Wlogger

The House Mill to Hackney Marshes

Twickenham Stadium to Crane Park Island

The Oval to Brockwell Park

Arnos Park to Trent Country Park

Blackheath to Mudchute Park & Farm

The Bridges of London (Part one) – Tower Bridge to Vauxhall Bridge

The Bridges of London (Part two) – Grosvenor Railway Bridge to Kew Bridge

The Bridges of London (Part three) – Richmond Lock and Footbridge to Hampton Court Bridge

15 of my Favourite Hidden Gems in London

The Historical and Modern Landmarks of London

Exploring Six of London’s Parks

Discovering Nine of London’s Commons

Introducing the London Wlogger Podcast

Episode 2: Tower Bridge to Stave Hill

Episode 3: Victoria to Green Park

Episode 4: Richmond Green to Wimbledon Common

Episode 5: Hyde Park Corner to Italian Gardens

Episode 6: Little Venice to Abbey Road

Episode 7: Waterloo to The London Eye

Episode 8: Highgate Wood to Finsbury Park

Episode 9: Regent’s Park to Soho Square

Episode 10: Hackney Downs and Springfield Park

Episode 11: The Shard to Monument

Episode 12: St Paul’s Cathedral to Moorgate

Episode 13: Gladstone Park to Fryent Country Park

Episode 14: Chiswick Bridge to Kew Green

Beyond London: Reigate Hill (Surrey)

Beyond London: Quebec House (Kent)

Beyond London: Sheffield Park Station and Garden (Sussex)

Sources:

All photos taken by London Wlogger © Copyright 2021

Information about Titsey Place and Gardens

10 thoughts on “Beyond London: Tranquility at Titsey Place and Gardens in Surrey

  1. An interesting and beautiful series of images, along with the history of somewhere I’ve not had an opportunity to visit yet.
    So much that I need to catch up with, after 30 or so years away from UK.
    Our history is a fascinating subject for those willing to read and explore it.

    Liked by 1 person

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