Harvington Hall is a medieval and Elizabethan Catholic recusant house, full of priest-holes and belonging to the Throckmortons of Coughton Court, Warwickshire (National Trust) until 1923. It was then bought by Mrs Ellen Ryan Ferris and given to the Archdiocese of Birmingham, whose Archbishops (Thomas Leighton Williams in 1930–1931, and Maurice Couve de Murville since 1985) put it into good repair and opened it to the public. The National Trust holds covenants over 27.5 acres surrounding the Hall but only owns 1/4 of an acre consisting of the front lawn and car park. Mr H. R. Hodgkinson, who entrusted the National Trust with the covenants in 1940–1945, also gave the Trust the oak furniture and its pictures, notably the ‘The Madonna and Child with Saint John the Baptist, Saint Paul and Saint Hyacinth' by the Sienese artist Ventura Salimbeni (1568–1613), although they have no connection with the house and it is not known when, how, or from where he obtained them. They are, however, complemented by the interesting survivals of high quality sixteenth-century wall paintings, which were only rediscovered in 1936. Note that Harvington Hall is owned and managed by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Birmingham.
National Trust Collections at Harvington Hall
Harvington, Kidderminster, Worcestershire DY10 4LR England
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