ST MARY’S HOUSE & GAR­DENS

History Revealed - - THE 2018 HERITAGE GUIDE -

Few build­ings in Sus­sex re­flect the rich tapestry of the county’s his­tory over al­most 900 years as well as the mag­nif­i­cent, tim­ber-framed St Mary’s House in Bram­ber. It has stood at the cen­tre of this idyl­lic, tra­di­tional, English vil­lage for some six cen­turies. Sir Si­mon Jenk­ins, in his book Eng­land’s Thou­sand Best Houses, de­scribes St Mary’s as both “a shrine to medieval Sus­sex” and “ec­cen­tric and de­light­ful”. The fine pan­elled in­te­ri­ors in­clude the unique El­iz­a­bethan ‘Painted Room’ with its in­trigu­ing trompe l’oeil mu­rals, the mag­nif­i­cent Vic­to­rian Mu­sic Room and many fas­ci­nat­ing col­lec­tions. The five acres of grounds in­clude for­mal gar­dens with amus­ing top­i­ary and an ex­cep­tional ex­am­ple of the pre­his­toric tree Ginkgo biloba, Ju­bilee Rose Gar­den, the Po­etry Gar­den, a wood­land walk, and the Land­scape Water Gar­den. A special de­light is the se­cret, walled gar­den with rare pineap­ple pits, and ter­ra­cotta frame­work. The new­ly­de­signed King’s Gar­den, opened by HRH Princess Alexandra last year, fea­tures a de­scen­dant of the famous Bosco­bel Oak, re­call­ing the visit of King Charles II dur­ing his es­cape to France. St Mary’s is a mag­i­cal, time­less place – a haven of tran­quil­lity and beauty. It’s One of the most beau­ti­ful places I’ve ever vis­ited in Eng­land.

OPEN­ING TIMES April - Septem­ber. Sun­day & Thurs­day 2pm - 6pm

01903 816205 stmarys­bram­ber.co.uk

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