|HCC Site ID:||1368||Parish:||Langrish|
|Access:||Access to hotel||Ownership:||Private|
Location and site
Langrish House lies to the south of East Meon and south off the A232, Winchester to Petersfield Road. There is extensive woodland (copses) to the east and south of the site. It is within the South Downs National Park.
In 1842 a farm and land was purchased by Mr. John Waddington a tenant of Shawford House, Winchester, from Mr. White a sheep farmer. Mr. Waddington enlarged the house adding two wings. All family records were lost during WW2 but it is believed the cellars of this house date back to the Civil War and the lakes were named Wool Ponds from the days of the sheep farming.
Shortly after this purchase the old road was moved from the rear to the front of the property and Mr. Waddington tried to have it built further from the house. He was unable to get agreement from one property owner, the blacksmith, who was worried about lost trade, although shortly there after he purchased this smithy. He also tried to sue the builders of this road for the death of his fish in the lakes, believing the run off from the road killed them, but, despite being a barrister he lost the case. Apart from buying up many village properties he also built a new farm and out buildings and planted many specimen trees. A Biloba Ginko and a large Sequoia still stand and two trees removed in 2007 were dated to be about 150 years old, the time of his purchase. The lake had an ice house on its banks; this is now within the industrial site boundary.
Mr. John Waddington’s three sons John, George and Thomas who died young, continued to live in the house after his death. They were all great benefactors of the village giving land and funds for the building of the village church, the vicarage and the village school. His one daughter Emma married Mr. Frederick R. Delme Radcliffe and their daughter Constance married Mr. Charles William Talbot-Ponsonby. This is the side of the family who went on to inherit the property.
The father of the present owner began to sell the estate in the 1970’s. The outhouses and stables already converted into a light industrial site were the fist to go and finally the house. For a while it was used as a private house and then converted to an hotel. When it came up for sale in 1998 the Talbot-Ponsonby family, who were living in the village at the time, bought the house back into the family and continue to run it as an hotel.
The front of the property is largely unchanged with lawns, trees and a gravel drive from the road, now extended to take cars out on the other side of the house. The original flint wall along the road is still topped with old and some new beech and yew hedging. The lawns to the rear of the house slope down towards the woods and lakes and old photos show a terrace, with steps and a retaining stone wall planted with roses. These beds have now disappeared with just a few steps remaining. It is believed that after a house fire much of the rubble was pushed over the lawns destroying the beds and walls. A small summer house facing the lawns has been reinstated. The front lawn to the right of the house was once a tennis court but today has an open aspect over the metal railings towards rolling country side.
The out houses in the walled garden were converted into work shops by the father of present owner and have since been sold to form a small industrial site. The old serpentine paths through the woods are now much over grown but still visible down to the lakes. The present owner recalls the gardener coming in on his day off, scythe in hand, to try and keep the paths clear. Rhododendrons, conifers and deciduous trees together with spring bulbs and wild garlic make a lovely, if rather overgrown, walk down to the lakes. Part of the two flint and wood bridges and some of the weir’s mechanism still stand by the lake. The island is now very overgrown and silt has almost connected it to the banks.
Enlarged from a farm house in the 1840s by J H Waddington, Langrish House today is a Country House Hotel with reduced grounds of some 14 acres consisting of lawns, mature trees, country walks and coarse fishing within its own lakes. It is owned by the Talbot-Ponsonby family, descendents of Mr Waddington.
August 2008 pending edits. Not for York database.
HGT Research: May 2007
Click here for the Hotel website
Hampshire Record Office
Whites Directory 1859
Victoria County History Vol 3 1908
Sales details – 147M85/32 1918
1595 Norden Map Old Hampshire Mapped
1607 Norden Map Old Hampshire Mapped
1826 Greenwood Map Old Hampshire Mapped
1st ed OS map 25″ 1869 Hampshire County Council
2nd ed OS map 25″ 1896/7 HCC
3rd ed IS nao 25/2 1909 HCC
3rd OS map 6″ 1910 HCC
Master map 2005 HCC
Photo around 19000 of the house Petersfield Museum
Memories of Mrs Talbot Ponsonby 1936 Petersfield Museum
Sunday Telegraph article 1998 Petersfield Museum
Family photos and record 1901
Personal communication Mr and Mrs Talbot Ponsonby 2007