Standen, hidden down a narrow country lane but with breathtaking views over the Sussex Weald, was the second Victorian house the National Trust acquired, after Wightwick Manor in 1937. It was also the only house designed by Philip Webb (1831–1915) to have survived without alteration. The Trust subsequently acquired William Morris’s own Red House, also by Webb, in 2003. Standen was built in 1894 for James Beale (1840–1912), a Birmingham solicitor, his wife Margaret Field (1847–1936), and their large family. The couple’s portraits by William Nicholson were given to the Trust by Phyllis Wager (their last surviving granddaughter) in March 2009. The house was bequeathed by Miss Helen Beale (1885–1972), the youngest of their four daughters, who had preserved the furnishings of Morris & Co., William De Morgan, W. A. S. Benson, and Charles Kempe. A generous sum for a long lease of the main part of the house was provided by Arthur and Helen Grogan, tenants and enthusiasts for the Arts and Crafts Movement, who sadly left in 1983, but some of whose pictures the Trust was able to buy, notably those by the Newlyn School of artists.
National Trust, Standen
Standen, West Hoathly Road, East Grinstead, West Sussex RH19 4NE England
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