|HCC Site ID:||1173||Parish:||Crondall|
|Designations:||House LB II||Area:|
|Access:||No Public Access||Ownership:|| Care Home and Hospital/
Spire Home and Hospital
In 1312 John de Westcote was granted free warren in his demesne lands of Badley, Clere was possibly a subdivision of that manor. A Mr Harding built the listed Grade II house in 1725. He was a West Indian planter. His nephew built the walled garden at Upper Clare Farm, so that it can be assumed the walled garden at Clare Park already existed. From 1827 Birch family held the land for approximately 100 years. The 1871 1st edition O.S. map shows parkland forming a triangle between the Dippenhall to Crondall Road, Dora’s Lane, and Dora’s Green to the northern point of the first road. In the park, a belt of trees lined the Dippenhall to Crondall Road; evergreens and deciduous trees had been planted in clumps and singly; a wooded area to the north east of the house called ‘The Mount’ was criss-crossed with paths; a copse bordered Dora’s Lane. The walled garden, greenhouses, large pond, and subsidiary buildings were just to the north of the main house. There was a lodge at the northern entrance, and this was probably the main approach drive; two other entrances were on the Dippenhall to Crondall Road.
It is understood that ancestral relatives of the builder of Clare Park House were also related to Gilbert White, the naturalists.
Between 1921 and now, the buildings around the house have either been adapted or replaced to accommodate first a girl’s school after the 2nd World War, and more recently a BUPA hospital. Parts of the walled garden have disappeared. Recently an additional large building has been erected to the north of the former walled garden. A smaller sized pond remains in the main building complex, the park has scattered belts of trees, and trees line the southern approach drive; ‘The Mount’, is reduced in size, and still forms the northeast boundary.
Clare Park is a large ancient parkland site, with a lodge and approach drives and includes a walled garden, woodland walks and extensive planting that forms the setting to a listed 18th century house.
Information: October 2000