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Boughton Monchelsea

Boughton Monchelsea
Maidstone
Kent
Post Code : ME17 4BU
Telephone : 01622 743 120
Admission Cost Admission Charge
Please note that this house is no longer open to the public except Group Visits and special events

Boughton Monchelsea Place is an Elizabethan manor house set on a hillside with breathtaking views over the deer park and across the Kentish Weald.

The Doomsday Book records a house named 'Boltone' on the site and in the 12th century this was acquired by the Monchensies, a Norman family from Mont Chenis. Over the years the name Boltone Montchenie has evolved into Boughton Monchelsea.

In 1551 the estate was purchased by Robert Rudston, a Yorkshireman, from a family of wealthy drapers. Rudston was involved in the rebellion against Queen Mary lead by Thomas Wyatt and, although he was fortunate not to be executed, he suffered considerable fines. This meant that the rebuilding of Boughton Monchelsea proceeded very slowly.

Nevertheless the house seen today is largely Rudston's work.

The original medieval house faced the church and down the hill and the present south wing was built on this site.

This was extended to the east and in 1575 the east or entrance front was added. Rudston finally added two further wings so that the house enclosed a small square courtyard.

In 1613 the property was acquired by the Barham family and then by the Riders in 1685. The Rider family added an internal staircase in 1700 and Thomas Rider II demolished the north and west wings to form an L-shaped house. The house was given a Gothic appearance by Thomas Rider III in the early 19th century. He created Gothic windows and remodelled some of the principal rooms.

During the 19th century Boughton Monchelsea Place did not have a regular occupant and as a result no Victorian alterations were made to the house.

In 1903 the property was purchased by Lt-Colnel G.B. Winch, the chairman of a local brewery. In 1954 his nephew, Michael Winch, inherited the estate but he found the house too large and converted a section into apartments.

On his death in 1990 Boughton Monchelsea was bequeathed to a trust.

The house is reached by a long drive which finally descends to the lawn along the entrance front.

From here there is a wonderful view over the deer park with the Kentish Weald in the distance. The entrance facade is Elizabethan in shape and has a central porch and attic windows. The Gothic windows were added in the early 19th century. The Entrance Hall has Gothic pillars and decoration with 18th and 19th century furniture. The Dining Room is also decorated in Gothic style.

The broad staircase dates from 1685. An original Elizabethan staircase leads up to the attic which has servants' rooms dating from the turn of the 20th century.

Boughton Monchelsea Place is set in a beautiful country estate with a private deer park. There is a charming walled garden and a courtyard with a 17th century turret clock. The barn houses a collection of wagons, carriages and early agricultural implements.

Nearby is the church of St Peter which is medieval in origin with a mainly Victorian interior.

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Boughton Monchelsea
House Features
Elizabethan manor house, deer park, furnished rooms, garden, collection of carriages.
Opening Times
For group tours and special events only.
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