Bordean House (Borden, Bordon House)

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HCC Site ID: 1367 Parish: Langrish
Designations: SDNP, House LB II Area: c 6.07 ha (15 acres)
Access: No Public Access Ownership: Private

Location and site

Bordean House stands on high ground about ½ mile from Bordean and just south of the A272, the Winchester-Petersfield road which forms the northern boundary of the grounds, on the highest point of this section of road at 507 ft.

Historic development

Bordean House is believed to have been built by Sir Roger Langrish in 1611. (Hickcox, Evelyn 1986) on the site of an earlier house. In the 17th century it was owned firstly by Sir William Lewis then by his granddaughter and her husband, Lewis Buckle, remaining in this family until bought by Henry Chawner in 1812 with 47 acres of grounds. (Hickcox, Evelyn 1986; Hampshire Telegraph,  May 1888).  It was sold again, in 1851 to Robert Henley Payne, remaining in the family until 1876 though often let to tenants. (The Times, 28 June 1851; Hickcox, Evelyn 1986) The Tithe map, 1853, shows the house and estate with 46 acres (18.5 ha).  It is described as having many Elizabethan ‘decorations’ at that time (Hickcox, Evelyn 1986).   A house is shown on the Taylor map 1759 in its current site, on the Milne map1791 as Borden with the name Buckle Esq and on the Greenwood map, 1826, as Bordon Hse.
The house is built of malmstone and brick with a slate roof.  The centre part was rebuilt in the early 20th century, following the removal of a more westerly unit.  By the mid-19th century it was a small estate with kitchen garden, orchard and parkland to the south of the house. (AHBR, HCC).    Robert Payne owned a further 326 acres including the limekilns to the SE of the site (Tithe Apportionment, 1853).  By 1853, there is a small pond in the parkland, a barrow with small clump of trees in front of the house, woodland pathways. (Tithe Map, 1853)  In 1869, there was mixed planting in the park and outbuildings, a walled kitchen garden to the E of the house and an orchard to the W.  A lodge is shown at the end of a drive to the road, NE (OS Map, 1869 25”).  By this time, the pond has been developed into a reservoir which had extensive piping built to supply water to the house.  The remains of the brick reservoir and its lead lining are still visible together with some of the piping (Personal Communication 2009).
In 1878 the estate was acquired by Sir William Nicholson of Basing Park and a document of 1905 shows Bordean House to be part of that estate and tenanted to Colonel Bibby (HRO 147M85/64).  The house and land were 15.78 ha (39 acres).  The Park was 7.3 ha (18 acres), the rest were woods and pasture.   Another tenant was Laurence Cave before he acquired Ditcham Park (Penfold, 1986, 37-38; The Times, 10 March, 1888). Sir William died in 1909. (The Times July, 1909).  His widow moved into Bordean House after his death, though it was owned by one of their sons, and lived there until her death in 1934 (The Times, 26 September, 1934). In 1928, two potting sheds, one tool shed, one open shed, one fruit room, two heated greenhouses 18×19, brick pits and lights were noted in a Petersfield Rating Valuation Survey (HRO 102M92/18).  Grounds were described as first class with fruit, vegetable and flower gardens but the lawns were not yet matured.  There was a double entrance lodge and an area of 3.5 ha (9.5 acres).  In the late 19th century some alterations were carried out to the original H-block shape of the building and in 1911 a larger extension was built to the east (AHBR).
During the Second World War, the house was used by the Navy and the Civil Defence later moved into the basement remaining into the 1970s.  The Basing Park Estate was broken up in 1944 and Bordean House eventually sold in 1947 to the Oblates of the Assumption and order of nuns (Penfold,  1986, 37-38).   In 1975 it was leased to the Sue Ryder Foundation and used as a hospice until the 1997.  From 1994-98 several female names appear as occupants on the Electoral Rolls.  The property is described in 1986 as having ‘a narrow wrought iron gate let into a grey stone wall, a courtyard, remains of a stable or coach-house, magnificent trees some old with also a 3ft statue of the Virgin Mary and gravestones of some of the nuns.  The windows on all sides of the house give a glorious view of undulating meadows and tall trees, maple, oak, elms and yet.  Tall conifers shield the house from the busy main road’ (Hickcox,Evelyn 1986; Penfold,  1986, 37-38).
The Sue Ryder lease expired in 1997 and the house was bought by a developer who divided the site into several parts: the main house and grounds, the 1911 extension named Middlemarch, the stables and engine house together with a small cottage, now Courtyard House and a cottage and the two semi-detached lodges.  The main house stood empty for some time (Electoral Rolls 1998/1999 and the eventual owner). In 1999-2000 the new owners of the main house carried out much restoration and the house now stands in 4 acres of gardens surrounded by 11 acres of woodland and pasture.  The other parts were also extensively renovated.

Current description

The approach to the residences, which now comprise the main house (Bordean Manor House), Middlemarch (most of a 1911 extension), Courtyard House and cottage, East and West Lodges,  is through a gateway with brick piers and a winding drive. The gardens and grounds of the main house are mainly to the south and west. In front of the house, adjacent to the drive, is a bank leading down to a large area of lawn with a number of fine trees, including yew and established shrubs. To the rear of the main house is a York stone paved terrace close to the main reception rooms, with stone steps leading to the lawn which slopes up to the SW.  By the side of  the gardens is a newly planted orchard. Middlemarch has  part of the garden which is now divded by a fence and a woooden pergola; a walled garden is shared between Courtyard House and the cottage. The two lodges have their own small garden.  Derelict greenhouses remain in a further walled area to  the east of the main walled garden. There are now  1.6 ha (4 acres) of gardens,  surrounded by 4.45 ha (11 acres) of woodland and pasture.  There is evidence of past history, with the remains of paths in the walled garden, the reservoir with an intricate delivery system to  the house and a reputed underground passage for which only  inconclusive evidence has been unearthed. There is also a tumulus which appears on most maps and is still to be seen.


17th century original house, developed with small parkland in the 19th century.  Post WWII a convent, a hospital and currently in multi-ownership with 6.07 ha of gardens, woodland and pasture.
HGT Research:  June 2009


Hampshire Record Office (HRO)
21M65/F7/1 & 2  Tithe map and Apportionment
102M92/18           1928 Petersfield District Valuation Rating Survey
147M85/64           Description of part of the Basing House Estate
147M85/75           Poem ‘The House on the Hill’ by Peter Macdonald
147M85/34            Sales Particulars for 1946
Electoral Rolls 1994-2000
Taylor 1759   (accessed 05/03/2009)
Milne 1791             Ditto
Greenwood 1826    Ditto
Tithe map 1853  and apportionment    21M65/F7/1 & 2
1st ed OS map 25” 1869, 6” 1871-80
2nd ed OS map 25” 1896, 6” 1897
3rd ed OS map 25” 1909 6” 1910-11
Mastermap 2007 6”
Hickcox, Evelyn, Southern Press, Horndean, 1986  8-9  Some Aspects of Langrish Life through the Ages  (HRO TOP189/1/1)
Other Sources
Penfold, Dorothy, 1986, Hidden on a hill’ Hampshire County Magazine, August, pp. 37-38
with a correction from October 1986 p38
‘Hampshire Within Living Memory’ Hampshire Federation of Women’s Institutes 1994 (Chandlers Ford Library)
AHBR, Hampshire County Council
Parks and Gardens Record, Hampshire County Council
Sales Details, John D Wood 2008
Personal Communication with the owner of the Bordean Manor House and Courtyard House (June 2009)
Electronic Sources – Old Hampshire mapped, Norgate, Jean & Martin  Times On-Line and 19th Century Hampshire Newspapers via the Hampshire Libraries Service (accessed at various times 2008/2009) (no longer available online 3/3/19)
http://www.hants/ Hampshire Treasures Volume 6 p209 (no longer available online 3/3/19)  Census returns, personal subscription accessed 2008/2009 Langrish Parish Council web site Archaeology and Historic Building Record (AHBR)

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