Mapledurham House, Reading. Hand Picked Places to Visit in Berkshire, England
Heritage Britain

Places to Visit in Reading, Berkshire

Mapledurham House

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Mapledurham, a beautiful late 16th century Elizabethan manor houses set in tranquil surroundings alongside the River Thames, has been the house of the Blount family and their descendants for over 500 years. Richard Blount purchased the old manor (now tea-rooms) in 1490 and building of the present manor houses was commenced by Sir Michael Blount, lieutenant of the Tower of London, in 1588 and completed by his son Sir Richard in 1612. Original plasterwork ceilings and grand oak staircases can still be admired by visitors, as can the fine collections of pictures and family portraits of the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries. The family chapel built in the
late 1700s, decorated in Strawberry Hill Gothick and still in regular use, is one of the rooms viewed by the public.

The great 18th century poet, Alexander Pope, spent much time at Mapledurham visiting his friends, Martha and Theresa Blount and was probably responsible for landscaping the grounds.

Mapledurham also has literary connections with John Galsworthy and “The Forsyte Saga” whilst lovers of Kenneth Garham’s “Wind in the Williows” constantly question whether or not Mapledurham House was the original Toad Hall or the Watermill the setting of Mole and Ratty’s memorable picnic.

There has been a Watermill at Mapledurham since Saxon times and present structure dates from the 15th century. The traditional wooden machinery is fully restored and the undershot waterwheel can be seen in action powering the great French burr milestones to produce flour on open afternoons each weekend during the summer.
The great sense of continuing history and the idyllic setting add to pleasure of an afternoon.

In all there 34 listed buildings on this small country estate, a veritable feast of English Heritage.

Mapledurham House, Reading

With Disabled Access: Yes

Historic House, Tea Room, Picnic Area, Car Park, School Tours Available, Film location (The Eagle has Landed)

Prices per Person unless specified
Rooms from £95

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