Category: countryhouse

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Bramham Park is located in Bramham in Yorkshire, England. Robert Benson, 1st Lord of Bingley, built the country house in the 17th century. The architect designed the house in the style of a 16thcentury Florentine villa. The castle has a central block and is linked to the wings by colonnades. One wing held the kitchen and the other the chapel, symbolizing the balance needed in body and spirit. The central hall is two stories and is done in a Baroque design. Bramham House suffered a fire in 1828 and was abandoned for 80 years. The house remains in the Benson family and was completely restored in the 20thcentury. Bingley is also responsible for laying out the extensive gardens, which cover 900 acres and are divided by avenues, and follies styled like Greek temples. Bramham Estate is home to the Leeds Festival, the International Horse Trials, and other events. Bramham Estate is open to the public. 

Hensol House is located in Kirkcudbrightshire in Galloway, Scotland. Hensol House dates back to the early 15thcentury and was added to by several owners throughout its history. The Jenkins family owned it from 1419-1721. The castle also passed through the members of the Cunninghame Clan from the 19thto the 21stcenturies. Big Game hunter, Richard Cunninghame lived in the home until his death in 1925. Richard went on safari with the late President Roosevelt and saved him from an angry rhino. The Gothic and Tudor designed country home sits on the River Dee and Loch Ken at the end of a mile-long private drive. Built with granite and slate, the three-story house has square turrets and slit windows with diamond-pane glazing. The gardens were designed to encircle the house, and include yew trees, a sundial, a walled garden, and graveled areas. The 632-acre property has a tennis court, a summerhouse, cottages, a farmhouse, a boathouse, various outbuildings, and a Gothic style 1822 lodge located near the entrance gate. Hensol House has ten bedrooms, two family bathrooms, a sitting room, a conservatory, four reception rooms, a drawing room, a library, a wine cellar, and a billiards room. The interior boasts high ceilings, a Jacobean carved mantelpiece, a cantilevered staircase with a mezzanine landing, a cupola, large bay windows, and vaulted ceilings. The castle is currently on the market for 5.5 million. 

Kilcroney House is located in County Wicklow in Kilcroney, Ireland. The two-story Tudor style country house was built in 1835. The castle has a series of gabled wings, with natural slate finishing the pitched roof. In 1668, Brian McAlexander Toole owned the property, but the lands were confiscated by King Charles II as punishment for Toole’s involvement in a local rebellion. The king granted the lands to Sir William Flower. During the mid 17thcentury, public hangings took place on this site from the trees that overhang the Dargle River, which runs past the land. The castle houses one of the oldest churches in Ireland and serves as a national monument. The castle served as a private residence and had many owners until 1933 when the castle was transformed into the Kilcroney Hotel. In 1951, Sir Basil Goulding purchased the property and the castle became a golf and sports club: the first country club in Ireland. In 1955, Kilcroney House was taken over by the Hosteller Order of St. John of God and used as a Juniorate school and retreat. In 1994, the castle came under the ownership of the Legionaries of Christ and now serves as the Dublin Oak Academy. The school boasts a chapel, classrooms, science lab, computer lab, game room, dormitories, three full size football pitches, three tennis courts, two gyms, and a pitch and putt area for golf. Although the Kilcroney House has undergone numerous renovations, most of the original detail and character remain.