|HCC Site ID.||1361||Parish:||Horndean|
|Access:||No Public Access||Ownership:||Private|
Location and site
Blendworth Lodge is to the south of the South Downs National Park boundary and local Conservation Area. It is situated in the village of Horndean that is approximately seven miles north of Havant on an unmade road called Church Path, just north of Rowland’s Castle Road and close to the A3 Portsmouth to London Road. It is within ‘the Downland Mosaic landscape’ that comprises an area of chalk downland which extends further westwards (SDNP LCA).
In 1820 Sir William Knighton, physician and Keeper of the Privy Purse to George IV, bought Blendworth Cottage as a retreat from Court, his wife having family in Blendworth. He later added ancient pasture east of the cottage.
By 1839, three years after Sir William’s death, his four-bedroomed cottage ornée had become a mansion called Blendworth Lodge. His son, Sir William Wellesley Knighton, surrounded it with grounds that eventually covered the sites of two family homes and a rectory. To mature parkland that he acquired, Sir William Wellesley Knighton added American planting including sequoia, cedar, liquidambar, ginkgo and tulip tree. Later owners built a ha-ha over which to view the pasture.
In 1917 Blendworth Lodge was severely damaged by fire. Its remains, mostly two late 19th century extensions at the south end, were made into a smaller house and all but its immediate grounds were sold off. The mature parkland west of the house went for housing but retained many trees. The walled garden, gardener’s cottage and pasture survived despite separate ownerships. At the stables site the turning circle and some of the stable walls were preserved. During the 1920s Blendworth Lodge was a farmhouse with rented farmland. In 2000, the owners of Blendworth Lodge made essential repairs and created a new garden based on Sir William Wellesley Knighton’s American planting.
The Lodge entrance is on Church Path through small wooden gates. The gravel drive has a turning circle in front of the white rendered building which faces north towards attractive lawns and many specimen trees. To the rear is the site of Letcombe House, later an industrial depot and now a small housing estate. In 2010, permission was given for new owners to have a ground floor extension added to the Lodge.
In the mid 19th century, Blendworth Lodge was surrounded by a small parkland with American tree planting. In the early 20th century, the Lodge was severely damaged and land was sold off to pay for its repairs. New owners in the late 20th incorporated the 19th century American planting into their garden. Many specimen trees remain.
HGT Research: August 2000 & update November 2012
Hampshire Record Office (HRO)
6M59/8/7 Transcription of part of 1885 catalogue and map for Executors’ sale of
Sir William Wellesley Knighton’s
21M65/F7/24/2 Tithe Map 1839
OS Mastermap 2011
Stapleton, Barry, 2000, ‘Horndean 2000’, Horndean Parish Council
Campbell, Krystyna, May 1998, ‘Blendworth Lodge, Hampshire, Appraisal of the Historic Landcape, its significance and a Proposal for future repair and management held at HGT
East Hants District Council, 1974 – tree list compiled when TPO EH9 was imposed.
Hampshire Telegraph 2.2.1917 p4, col l on the fire at Blendworth Lodge. Portsmouth City Library
Portsmouth Evening News 12.1.1980. 1917 photograph of fire-damaged house,
East Hants District Council Planning application 28375/021/HSE/KC 2010 [accessed 19/11/2012]
TPO records online
Click here to visit Kniighton Seymour estate web page