Scotney Castle is a moated house set in a wonderfully Romantic garden with idyllic views. Originally built in 1378 but now ruined, it was for 350 years the home of the Darrell family. They sold out to Edward Hussey (1749–1816) in 1778 after prohibitive recusancy fines, and it has remained in the Hussey family ever since. Edward Hussey III (1809–1894) commissioned Anthony Salvin (1799–1881) to design a completely new house in yellow sandstone on slightly higher ground. It was completed between 1837 and 1844 in the fashionable Elizabethan Revival style. Christopher Hussey (1899–1970), the architectural historian and writer for ‘Country Life’ inherited Scotney Castle from his uncle in 1952. He bequeathed the estate to the National Trust, with a life interest to his widow Betty Hussey, who lived in the new castle until her death. William Maw Egley’s ‘“Hallo Largesse”, a Harvest Scene in Norfolk’ was a wedding present from Christopher to Betty. It depicts the East Anglian custom of gentry visitors giving presents to harvesters. Also of note are ‘A Maid in a Kitchen and Christ with Martha and Mary in the Background’ by Joachim Beuckelaer, and the bizarre picture by the north Italian artist Faustino Bocchi of ‘Dwarves Gorging on Melons, and a Shipwreck’, bought by Christopher whilst still a student at Oxford in 1920.
National Trust, Scotney Castle
Lamberhurst, Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN3 8JN England
Please remember to double-check the opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit