West Horsley Place Trust
Stories past, present and future
West Horsley Place Trust is the charity created by Bamber Gascoigne (1935-2022) and Christina Gascoigne to conserve and repair the Grade I listed mediaeval manor house West Horsley Place and its surrounding 400-acre estate.
The trustees, staff and volunteers of this small independent charity are on a mission to make West Horsley the place for people to enjoy and participate in culture, heritage and nature.
The incredible building has layer upon layer of amazing history, with a story behind every door and around every corner. The manor dates from 1425, has Tudor extensions, an elegant 17th century brick façade and the remains of lavish 1930s interiors.
Owners have included Henry VIII – who enjoyed a 35-course lunch in the Stone Hall – Carew Raleigh, son of Sir Walter Raleigh, and Lady Elizabeth Fitzgerald, ‘Fair Geraldine’ of the Earl of Surrey’s famous sonnet. Queen Elizabeth I is known to have stayed on several occasions.
In 2014 historian and former presenter of University Challenge, Bamber Gascoigne, unexpectedly inherited West Horsley Place from his aunt, Mary, Duchess of Roxburghe. Decades of benign neglect had taken their toll on the house and also on the eight Grade II listed structures situated on the estate, and in October 2016, West Horsley Place was placed on the Historic England ‘Heritage at Risk’ register.
To conserve and repair the house, outbuildings and estate, and to give them a new life and purpose, Bamber and Christina Gascoigne generously transferred ownership of West Horsley Place to a new charity, the West Horsley Place Trust. With a diverse programme of activities and events, West Horsley Place is returning to life. The Trust aims to create a welcoming space for the whole community and to give people the freedom to explore, discover the exciting stories and create stories of their own.
Join their knowledge guides for a tour around the historic building or learn a new skill with one of their art and craft workshops. A programme of exhibitions and theatre is on offer or you can explore the estate with wildlife walks and wellbeing events. Give back to the charity and make new friends by becoming a volunteer or donate to help them with the repair and conservation work.
Take a look at the West Horsley Place Trust website and get involved today.
This is the place to discover at westhorsleyplace.org.