A few miles north of Exeter on the level land between the rivers Exe and Clyst, Poltimore House stands.
The POLTIMORE HOUSE TRUST was established in 2000 to preserve this historic building and its estate.
It is registered with the Charity Commission (Charity Commission no 1079947 and a company limited by guarantee (Companies House no 03914029). It is VAT registered (VAT 100937837) and registered with HMRC for collection of Gift Aid.
It is a Building Preservation Trust and member of the Association of Preservation Trusts.
The Trust is governed by a Board of Trustees who also act as Directors of the company.
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Photo: Lime Avenue, Poltimore by Derek Harper https://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/238614
Devon Gardens Trust Poltimore House was an early seat of the Bampfylde family (Sir GW Bampfylde became Lord Polimore in 1831), with considerable later improvements. In 1800, Swete visited and wrote that ‘I found it to be an edifice of modern date, consisting of a handsome front with two small projecting wings, which detracted very much from the degree of elegance that the mansion would otherwise have possessed. I have not a word to say in regard to the grounds or Park, which lies in front, extended into unvarying flat, having few, if any circumstances of local or adventitious beauty to recommend it.’ In 1822, Lysons wrote that ‘the house is now occupied by servants.’ White (1850) noted that it was ‘a large square cemented mansion in a beautiful park, stocked with deer, and encompassed by verdant and well-wooded hills. His lordship has recently much improved both the mansion and the park and considerably enlarged the latter.’ It was later converted into a hospital and then to an old people’s home. The parkland and a lodge survive as does the 19th century stables and gateposts have huge balls on slender pillars, dated 1681, repositioned near the main road; another pair can be seen north of the village. North of the house, the parkland is dominated by Lime and Poplar avenues, a pinetum and many specimen trees. An obelisk lies in pieces, never having been erected. The recent history and neglect of Poltimore resulted in its acquisition by, the East Devon District Council who passed it to the Poltimore House Trust.
The Poltimore gardens and woodlands cover about 30 acres, of which 13, including the land on which the House is built, now belong to Poltimore House Trust. Poltimore was recorded as a Deer Park in 1575, and the area surrounding the House is depicted in late 17th and early 18th century drawings as formal gardens with topiary and statuary. The two avenues of limes (one was felled in 1956 and replaced with poplars) date from about 1710, planted to mark the accession of George I. In 1840, George Bampfylde, 1st Baron Poltimore, commissioned James Veitch, son of John Veitch to plant woodlands on the rising ground behind the mansion. The trees planted at Poltimore House include a cork oak with a span of nearly 90ft, a magnificent copper beech 110 ft high near the church end of the lime avenue, two Lucombe oaks, one of whish is 130 ft in height, Turkey, holm and other species of oak. Among the spectacular conifers are six Wellingtonias, one at 135 ft the tallest tree in the garden, a Californian Redwood , Douglas, Spanish, Noble and Caucasian firs, a Monterey pine three Spruces, Monterey, Yellow and Swamp cypresses, yews, maples and some huge cedars. Facing the east front of the House is a great, spreading Japanese red cedar, several specimens of Monkey Puzzle From the viewpoint steps one can look into the the Arboretum with its magnificent trees.
Exploring Exeter All around the U.K, there is an abundance of historically important buildings or properties oozing rich stories and events of the past. Some are grand, beautiful and elegant, while others – no less important – are far less ostentatious. For some of these amazing properties, there is a tale of transition from great opulence to great decay. A story of immense change between desirability and necessity with a sequel currently being written of dedication and restoration.
So did you know that one such great historical property is right on your doorstep? I am talking about the superb Grade II listed marvel that is Poltimore House in Exeter.
White's Devonshire Directory 1850
Page 200. POLTIMORE, a parish of scattered houses, 4 miles N.E. of Exeter, includes the small hamlet of RATSLOE, and contains 264 inhabitants, and 1430 acres of land, all the property and manor of Lord Poltimore, who resides occasionally at POLTIMORE HOUSE, a large square cemented mansion in a beautiful park, stocked with deer, and encompassed by verdant and well-wooded hills. His lordship has recently much improved both the mansion and the park, and considerably enlarged the latter.
Page 201. The present Rt. Hon. Sir George Warwick Bampfylde was created BARON POLTIMORE in 1831, and is colonel of the North Devon Militia. He was born in 1786, and his eldest son, the Hon. Augustus Fredk. George Warwick Bampfylde, was born in 1837. He has another seat at Hardington Park, Somerset.
Historic England - II* Mansion of the Bampfylde family (after 1831, Lords Poltimore). Mainly late C16, late C17, C19 and a western range of 1908, with internal decorative schemes. Stuccoed, the whole building including moulded stonework painted white, with slate hipped roofs. An L-shaped Tudor house now forms the rear and east ranges of a large mansion that has undergone considerable expansion, enclosing and ultimately almost completely filling an internal courtyard. The front block was built by Sir Coplestone Bampfylde (d.1691; built possibly in 1681, the date inscribed on a gatepier to the estate). In the mid C18 the salon was redecorated; other principal rooms were refurbished in the later C18, and the Hall in the early C19. Also in 1908, a new range was attached to the left-hand side of the building. 2 storeys throughout with the exception of a service wing.
Trip Advisor Poltimore House is a GradeII listed 18th century country house just outside Exeter, Devon. Currently undergoing extensive renovation as seen in BBC TV's 'Restoration' programme. The house and grounds are open on selected days and various events are held throughout the year.
Wikipedia Poltimore House is an 18th-century country house in Poltimore, Devon. The Manor of Poltimore was from the 13th to the 20th century the seat of the Bampfylde family, which acquired the title Baron Poltimore in 1831. The house retains much of the fabric of earlier buildings on the site erected by the family. It is designated a Grade II* listed building.
It fell into a dilapidated condition during the second half of the 20th century. A group of volunteers began raising funds to restore the house in 2003, after it was a finalist in the BBC's Restoration programme, missing out on the funding that went with the top prize.
FreeCEN The aim of FreeCEN is to provide free internet searches of the 19th century UK census returns. The first UK census to include names and other details of UK residents took place in 1841. Since then, a census has been held every ten years.
The FreeCEN project was begun in July, 1999, with a pilot transcription for Devon, coordinated by Brian Randell. Since then, the project has moved on, outgrowing its original database and website: we are now based on this site and have plans to improve the database and the ways you can search it.
1861 Devon, Heavitree, Poltimore, Poltimore Park
BAMPFYLDE, A F G W, Head, 23, Baron Poltimore, MDX, London
BAMPFYLDE, Florence Sarah Wilhamina, Wife, 21, France, Paris
BAMPFYLDE, C R G W The Hon, Son, 1, DEV, Poltimore
CUTHBERT, George, Servnt, 34, Butler, SFK, Wattisfield
HARRIS, Mary, Servnt, 70, House Keeper, YKS, Leeds
GROGAN, George, Servnt, 31, Cook, MDX, London
GROGAN, Louisa, Servnt, 30, Ladys Maid, MDX, London
WOODMAN, Henry, Servnt, 25, Footman, HAM, Basingstoke
TUCK, John, Servnt, 28, Under Butler, SFK, Langham
WATERHOUSE, Agness, Servnt, 26, Nurse, MDX, Pimlico
PARKHOUSE, Ellen, Servnt, 18, Nurse Maid, DOR, Musbury
LOCK, Lucy, Servnt, 22, House Maid, HAM, Hurstborn
YELLAND, Emma, Servnt, 23, House Maid, DEV, Exeter
CLAPP, Jane, Servnt, 24, House Maid, DEV, Bradninch
PARKER, Ann, Servnt, 32, Laundry Maid, WIL, Minety
BICKMAN, Mary Ann, Servnt, 22, Laundry Maid, LAN, Liverpool
DAY, Frances, Servnt, 26, Still Room Maid, WIL, Salisbury
JOY, Susan, Servnt, 27, Kitchen Maid, KEN, Linton
FROST, Mary, Servnt, 19, Scullery Maid, DEV, Rewe
DINNES, John, Servnt, 17, Stable Boy, CAM, Coxton