Visit Roehampton's Jewel In The Crown

250 year old house is open to the public during Open House London weekend


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Roehampton’s beautiful 250-year old Parkstead House will open its doors to the public during this year’s Open House London weekend on 19-20 September.

Manresa Hall

Parkstead House, off Danebury Avenue, now home of Whitelands College at the University of Roehampton, was designed by William Chambers, in the palladian style for Lord Bessborough circa 1762. Visitors can see rooms maintained in the style of previous owners from the landed gentry as well as exploring its current use as part of the University.

Parkstead House will be open from 11.30am – 4pm on Sunday 20 September, with tours at midday and 2.30pm. Entry is free.

Free tours will be conducted by the University’s heritage expert Gilly King, who will tell the story of the house from its earliest owners through its time as a Jesuit novitiate or training house from 1860-1962 when it was known as Manresa House. Celebrated poet Gerard Manley Hopkins studied there, and a blue plaque now pays tribute to him. During the First World War, soldiers encamped in neighbouring Richmond Park used it as a training base.

Reverend Dr Mark Garner, Head of Whitelands College, said: “Roehampton has a surprisingly large number of Georgian villas and notable buildings but Parkstead House is the jewel in the crown. Our students are fortunate to be studying in such impressive surroundings, and I’m pleased we can welcome in local people for Open House weekend. I’d encourage Roehampton residents to visit and find out more about this interesting building on their doorstep, and to have a look at the inner workings of the University at the same time.”

More details can be found at Visitors are advised to check opening and tour times and dates before travelling.

Open House London takes place across the city every September, with famous and architecturally significant buildings opening to the public to allow people to appreciate and explore them from the inside. Many are normally only seen from the street.

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September 10, 2015