Mapperton House and Gardens Houses
Mapperton Gardens is a romantic valley garden deep into a lost Dorset combe among tumbling hills and unspoilt countryside. The gardens descend from the great lawn, through the formal topiary down to the valley garden. The manor house with its church,stable block, coach house, dovecote and courtyard is essentially a part of its countryside, a glorious harmony of golden sandstone. Pevsner's Dorset guide reckons "there can hardly be a more enchanting manorial group than Mapperton. "
Mapperton was entered in the Domesday Book as Malperetone. It was then the property of William de Moion, Sheriff of Somerset, who earned 70 shillings from arable land for four ploughs, twenty acres of meadow and pasture, woodlands and a mill.
The valley gardens at Mapperton reflect at least three periods of history. On the upper level, close to the house, is the Italianate garden laid out by Ethel Labouchere in her husband's memory in the 1920s, complete with grottoes, stone ornamental birds and animals and a fountain court.
Heraldic lions and griffins, representing Bretts and Morgans, appear in the original Tudor ceiling in the drawing room, echoing the stone figures on the roof. The fleur-de-lys motif continues in the pendant ceiling above. The elegant plaster work and fireplaces survive from Robert Morgan's house, while the panelling and oak chests are Jacobean.
AddressBeaminster, Dorset, Beaminster, Dorset, DT8 3NR
Opening times2pm - 6pm Mar - Oct
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