Visit to The Grange and Plumpton Place

Saturday 26 June 2004

Our rendezvous was on the Green in Rottingdean before visiting The Grange, formerly the Vicarage, and then the home of Sir William Nicholson, the painter and subsequently of Sir George Lewis who commissioned Lutyens to remodel the house and garden. His extension with flint and brickwork is very much in sympathy with the local Sussex vernacular.

After seeing other houses connected with Sir Edward Burne-Jones and Lutyens, we made our way to Plumpton Place, where we were made very welcome by the owner, Tom Perkins, who had arranged a delightful lunch in his restored barn. He has lived there since 1984 and has renovated the house and rebuilt the bridge across the moat in accordance with Lutyens’s original drawings. His late wife had restored the beautiful gardens which we explored as well as enjoying a conducted tour of the house by Tom. He reminded us, very gently, of the criticism he had received for altering the former Music Room designed for Edward Hudson, to provide additional fenestration and give a better view of the lake.

We also had the opportunity to see the ‘cottages’ Lutyens had designed with the new approach vista to the original house and the weatherboarded mill on the estate.

Our thanks were expressed to Tom and to Gavin Chappell for making all the arrangements for the visits and for providing such an excellent illustrated appreciation of Plumpton Place.

It was a most enjoyable and rewarding day.