Norton Manor (also known as Norton Park Hotel)5036

Winchester, England, Hampshire, Winchester

Brief Description

A 16th century house was restored and enlarged in the early-20th-century. Formal gardens were created with a fishpond or lake. There were many 19th-century garden features including an orangery, walled garden with espaliered fruit trees and glasshouses, all requiring attention. Extensive work was undertaken on a long, new access drive and the creation of parkland. The site is now the Norton Park Hotel.

History

Norton Manor was probably built in the 16th century for the St John family. It was tastefully restored and enlarged by Mr Hampton at the beginning of the 20th century. Up until 1980, the Manor was lived in as a family home by Mr and Mrs Willis. The site has since been in commercial use, and is now the Norton Park Hotel.

Detailed Description

Many features of the grounds are still intact, though some require restoration, including the orangery, the walled garden and the glasshouses. As late as 1978 (Batsford), the greenhouses and walled gardens, as well as the formal gardens, were fully in use. There are many mature trees including a huge Cedrus Atlantica Glauca. In 1976, the lake apparently dried up and was dredged out. It is now home to trout, eels and many wild fowl. The stables are completely intact, down to the names of the horses in the stalls, though in 2002 planning permission existed for conversion to offices.
Features
  • Orangery
  • Description: By the 19th century, features of the manor included an ogee-domed orangery.
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  • Greenhouse
  • Description: There was a long range of glasshouses built between 1870 and 1890.
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  • Manor House (featured building)
  • Description: The house was originally probably built in the 16th century for the St John family. It was tastefully restored and enlarged by Mr Hampton at the beginning of the 20th century.
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  • Lake
  • Description: In 1976, the lake apparently dried up and was dredged out. It is now home to trout, eels and many wild fowl.
  • Stable Block
  • Description: Stables were built in the late-19th-century or early-20th-century. The stables are completely intact, down to the names of the horses in the stalls, though in 2002 planning permission existed for conversion to offices.
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  • Planting
  • Description: There was a walled garden with espaliered fruit trees.
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  • Espalier
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  • Drive
  • Description: There has also been considerable tree planting along the drive which traverses land which had been farmland.
  • Specimen Tree
  • Description: There are many mature trees including a huge Cedrus Atlantica Glauca.
Garden Wall
Authorities

Civil Parish

  • Wonston
History

Detailed History

The house was originally probably built in the 16th century for the St John family. It was tastefully restored and enlarged by Mr Hampton at the beginning of the 20th century. Norton Farm lay close to the Manor and any park area would have abutted farmland. By the 19th century, features of the manor included an ogee-domed orangery, a long range of glasshouses built between 1870 and 1890, a walled garden with espaliered fruit trees, a further smaller and later walled garden with flower beds to the rear of the house. There was a lake, possibly earlier fishponds, a small parkland area and more formal lawns. Stables were built in the late-19th-century or early-20th-century and there were other outbuildings. A striking feature of the house was the corner pillars topped with blue and yellow Dutch tiles.

Up until 1980, the Manor was lived in as a family home by Mr and Mrs Willis. In 1986 the Manor was sold to Nomura, the Japanese bank who demolished the farm, though thatched the barn, and built a Conference Centre. The Manor house itself was seldom used during the next 13 years. Fanfare Hotels bought the whole in 1999. In 2000, Dolce International purchased the complex as an international conference centre, carried out extensive refurbishment including the Manor House, keeping very much to the traditional style. The complex changed hands again and became the Norton Park Hotel. Extensive alterations to the access were made and the hotel is now approached from the west to the east via a very long new drive. There has also been considerable tree planting along the drive which traverses land which had been farmland, and it is understood that a landscape plan to create parkland is being drawn up (2008).