The Macdonald-Buchanan family now own and live in Cottesbrooke Hall, which was completed in 1713 and built in the Queen Anne style.
Sir John Langham, 1st Baronet, bought the Cottesbrooke estate in 1635 and started building his house there in 1702. It was designed by Francis Smith and influenced by the design of Buckingham Palace, with a big central block surrounded by smaller and lower pavilions. In 1911 financial troubles forced the family to sell the estate to Captan Robert Bingham Brassey, who had some of it altered by the Arts and Crafts architect, Robert Weir Schultz. Then later in 1937, the MacDonald-Buchanan family moved there and they employed Lord Gerald Wellesley to alter bits of the hall, including changing the position of the entrance.
The inside of Cottesbrooke has elaborate rococo ceilings and wall panel decorations from the mid-18th century. Upstairs you’ll find fireplaces inset with Wedgewood pottery, and a visit to the China Corridor will give you an opportunity to see the rest of the Hall’s porcelain collection, which includes pieces from England, Continental Europe and China. But Cottesbrooke’s uniqueness comes from its world-renowned collection of sporting art, known as the Woolavington Collection. It includes pictures by George Stubbs, Ben Marshall, John Ferneley Senior, and Sir Alfred Munnings.
As well as designing the house, Robert Schultz also designed the gardens, which include a sunken courtyard with a small pool, and a terraced walk between Lebanon cedars and mixed borders. In 1937, a new garden was laid out by Sir Geoffrey Jellicoe, where the entrance to the house used to be. This new terrace has topiary, beds of roses and tubs of agapanthus flowers. You can take a guided tour of the house or just visit the gardens by yourself. It’s worth noting that the house is not open every day, but just check the opening times on Divento and you’ll know when it’s open.
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