|HCC Site ID:||1418||Parish:||Braishfield|
|Designations:||CA||Area:|| 1.2 ha garden,
9.5 ha parkland & pasture
|Access:||No Public Access||Ownership:||Private|
Location and Site
Braishfield House is situated on the main road through Braishfield Village, just north of the Church. The Village lies on the northern edge of the Hampshire basin with chalk to the north.
Braishfield village is shown on early maps as Brashfield, Brushfield or Braishfield, it consisted of a number of scattered farmsteads. A house is probably shown but not named on the site of Braishfield House on the Milne Map 1791, the OS 1” of 1810 and Greenwood Map of 1826; it is however clearly shown and named on the OS 1st ed 25” of 1870. When Braishfield House was sold in 1895 it was described as an estate of approximately 450 acres, consisting of the house, 27 acres of park like grounds, 3 farms and several cottages. The house was sold again in 1913, then an estate of 22 acres of grounds, a dairy farm of 135 acres and three cottages. In 1922 the dwelling was burnt down and rebuilt as a bungalow on the old foundations. Unfortunately in 1938 the house again burnt down and was rebuilt again on the original foundations, it was designed by the owner, an architect. From 1963 the new owners made various alterations to the property and some land was sold; since 1993 it has been the home of their son and family, who have again made alterations to the house and grounds.
A sales catalogue or 1913 describes the substantial stables and other outbuildings on the north side of the house in detail. These buildings survived the fires and some have been converted to residential use, and also a new barn built. The water supply for the house was from a well, now covered by a shed, and a storage cistern for rainwater sited under the yard.
In 1895 the pleasure grounds were described as having fine specimen trees, woodland walks, two tennis lawns, summer house, two kitchen gardens, fruit trees, greenhouse and orchard; also a park like meadow. The 1913 sales catalogue also features “a choice selection of ornamental timber trees and rare shrubs with some fine specimen cedar trees”; one large cedar is still a feature near the south front of the house. On the 1896 OS map there is footpath from the pleasure grounds through to Church Lane, its line is still marked by the remains of an avenue of horse chestnut, sweet chestnut and beech. Until the 1960s there was a walled vegetable garden, one wall remains; the vegetables have been replaced by a tennis court, swimming pool and bathhouse. A small orchard area shown on the 1870 map has remained.
Recent alterations include changing the house entrance and relocating the drive further south into Braishfield Road. There is an old entrance through a brick wall into the courtyard with brick gatepiers and iron gate. There is a tree belt circling the grounds and dividing them from the road. In the 1960s a ha-ha was built on the east boundary of the pleasure grounds, and in 1994 the present owners made another ha-ha on the south boundary, with new entrance gates and railings along the new drive.
The property had been a 182ha agricultural estate with a Georgian house, and Victorian pleasure grounds. In the 20th century, the house was twice burnt down and rebuilt on the same foundations. In the 1960s, the estate was sold leaving the house and grounds reduced. The pleasure ground is now bounded by two modern ha-has, a walled courtyard with stables, outbuildings and open paddocks.
HGT Research: July 2005