Uppark House, resembling a giant doll’s house in its red-brick four-square Dutch style, surrounded by its gardens and park, stands proudly on the crest of the South Downs. Built by an unknown architect for Lord Grey, 1st Earl of Tankerville, around 1690, Uppark has had a succession of colourful owners and occupants, including the Fetherstonhaugh family, Emma Hamilton and a young H. G. Wells. The house gained unwanted national attention when it sustained severe fire damage in 1989, but its restoration was a triumphant demonstration of craftsmanship, entailing the re-learning of traditional skills.
The guidebook charts the succession of owners and their guests, looking at the contribution made to the house by a Grand Tour. Each of the rooms open to visitors is described, as are the extensive below-stairs and service areas, linked by long, creatively lit underground passages. Examination of Humphry Repton’s work on the house and grounds is followed by the story of wider estate and garden.
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