Cadlington House

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HCC Site ID. 1362 Parish: Horndean
Designations: SDNP, House LB II Area: 1.8 ha
Access: No Public Access Ownership: Multiple dwellings – private

Location and Site

Cadlington house is located one mile east of Horndean and a half mile from the A3 (M) in the hamlet of Blendworth, that nestles in a valley to the south of Horndean Down and to the south west of Chalton Down.  It is situated on a quiet winding country road which rises towards the church and countryside. The area was designated a Conservation Area in 2004 and is now within the South Downs National Park.

Historic Development

The house was built for the marriage in 1829 of Dorothea Knighton to her cousin, Capt Michael Seymour RN.  The site was farmland next to their family homes, Blendworth Lodge and the old Blendworth House.  Cadlington was named after one of the fields (HRO 6M59/3/5/3).
Access was a lane past the front of the house, on its west side.  When the lane was closed in 1850 Cadlington retained its portion but was provided with a carriage drive from the nearest road.  Between 1839 and1870 a walled garden replaced a cottage in front of the house.  East of the house were lawns encircled with curved paths and planted with specimen trees and a shrubbery.  North of the house were outbuildings and later a model farmer ((HRO 6M59/M5).
In 1862, Seymour, by then Admiral Sir Michael Seymour, and his brother-in-law, Sir William Wellesley Knighton of Blendworth Lodge, bought the old Blendworth House to extend their grounds with its meadows and mature parkland (HRO 6M59/8/7).  During the 1920s and 1930s, Cadlington was self-sufficient in flowers, fruit and vegetables.  Its beds had box edging and its specimen trees were set in rollered lawns (Brickwood 1999).
In 1937, Cadlington was bought by Rear-Admiral Arthur Murray DSO, whose family made it an important part of village life.  When Mrs Murray died in 1976, she left the house to be sold to MENCAP at a very favourable price.  It became a residential home for young people.  She bequeathed the walled garden and adjacent field to establish a horticultural training project, the New Blendworth Centre (Murray 1998).  It is believed that the family still own some land to the west of the estate entrance. Around 2000, the rear garden, with its flowering shrubs, specimen trees and informal lawn, was a wildlife haven (Visit 2000).  By this time, MENCAP had decided to sell Cadlington House, to fund a purpose built site at Dolphin Court, Havant, as much upkeep and money was needed to bring Cadlington up to the required standard (Portsmouth News 2000 online).  They moved to Dolphin Court in 2007.
Whilst empty, Cadlington House was vandalized several times and lead removed from the roof further damaged the property. The property took some time to sell but was eventually purchased in 2006/7 by Kim O’Brian of C.K. Estates, based in Blendworth House. There was no building consent at the time of purchase. The architects, Huw Thomas Associates of Winchester; the Consultants, Bryan Jezeph of Titchfield, together with East Hampshire District Council and English Heritage were all involved with planning the development of the site and it was eventually decided that the house would be converted into three homes to be called Cadlington Hall, Murray House and Seymour House after previous owners (EH Planning 2008 online). 

Current description

In 2012, as well as the converted Cadlington House, the site contains: The Coach House, The Stables, Gardener’s Cottage, and The Orangery, all part of the original outbuildings; and three new buildings – The Barn House, Keepers cottage and The Pavilion.  The last is within the old walled garden, the walls of which have been repaired as necessary.  These buildings have all been sympathetically designed, in keeping with the earlier ones.  Whilst some of the properties have their own private gardens a management company has been retained to maintain the communal areas.  The Orangery has south facing lawns overlooking farmland, and the old Blendworth Church whilst Barn House has a quarter of a hectare of part wooded grounds.  Keepers Cottage is on a mature plot with a Magnolia tree and Rhododendrons. There are lawns to the south of the house and the whole is surrounded by mature trees. The Pavilion within the walled garden is surrounded by a terrace with columns.  The plot of approximately a third of a hectare has been landscaped with themed gardens – Italian, Japanese, Summer and kitchen (Thomas plan 2011 online). The short tree lined entrance has flint and brick piers and some of the old wall remains. The house and perimeter walls have flint galletting (Jezeph 2011 online).
The New Blendworth Charity, a Day Care and Plant Centre for people with learning difficulties, has been established for 25 years.  Some 38 people use it weekly for educational as well as horticultural purposes (Portsmouth News 2011 online). A beech hedge has been planted to screen the Plant Centre from the main house that is both in front of and beside the walled garden. The old outward drive is the entrance to this centre.
Cadlington House was built around 1830 with a model farmery established by the end of the century.  In the mid to late-20th century the house and garden were sold, with the walled garden and some adjacent land bequeathed to establish a horticultural training project.  This became the New Blendworth Centre.  In 2008, the original house was converted into three dwellings with outbuildings converted to private houses.  Two new dwellings were built in the garden and another in the walled garden.  The rest of the garden has been divided between private gardens and communal areas.  Some specimen trees remain. Flint galletting has been retained on the house and perimeter walls.
HGT Research:  2000;  update 2012


HRO Hampshire Record Office
6M59/3/5/3      Rev Sir Samuel Clarke-Jervoise’s accounts for 1826
6M59/M5        1st ed. OS map       1870
6M59/8/7         Auction catalogue for Blendworth Lodge   1885
Other Sources
Brickwood – Sir Basil Brickwood 1999 re 1931 – notes of telephone conversation
Murray family letter – 1998
Visit Portsmouth researchers 2000
Electronic Sources
EH planning – East Hampshire Planning website: Proposed site plan for Cadlington 2008; Orangery 2011; [access 2011]
Jezeph, RTPI award studies [accessed 13/4/2011]
Portsmouth News [accessed 2011]
Thomas plan: Thomas Huw (Architects) – site plan [accessed 21/7/2011]

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Horndean No Public Access Click for Disclaimer & copyright
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