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DateVisit
01 October 2019Ightham Mote and Chevening House
15 September 2019Western Sicily
18 August 2019Grim's Dyke Tour, Tea and Concert
01 August 2019Great Dixter Garden and House
20 June 2019Christ's Hospital School
19 May 2019North Wales Tour 19-24 May 2019
26 April 2019West Horsley Place (3rd visit)
08 April 2019City Visit to Mansion House
19 March 2019Thames Stroll in the Shadow of the Shard
20 February 2019Claremont Fan Court School
10 February 2019Sunday Lunch at Betchworth Golf Course
17 November 2018Historic Tour of Westminster Abbey with Purcell Singers
16 September 2018Treasures of Romania
11 September 2018Bamber Gascoigne's West Horsley Place
05 September 2018'Woman's Place in Parliament' Exhibition
16 July 2018St Mary's House, Bramber & Lancing College
14 June 2018College of Arms Tour and supper
11 June 2018Royal Holloway College
14 May 2018Isle of Wight Holiday
25 April 2018College of Arms Tour and supper
07 January 2018"Loving Vincent" and Lecture at Leatherhead Theatre
19 December 2017Christmas by Candlelight
18 October 2017Trip to Dover Castle
15 October 2017Members Sunday Lunch
20 September 2017Trip to Istria 19th - 27th September 2017
17 August 2017Stories in Stitchwork
06 July 2017Hampstead guided walk and visit to two National Trust houses
22 June 2017UK tour to Norwich
08 May 2017Knebworth House visit
20 March 2017Two Temple Place
10 March 2017East Surrey Area Special Interest Meeting
02 March 2017"Mary Rose"
02 February 2017City Visit and Old Bailey
20 December 2016Concert in Parish Church - Christmas by Candlelight
11 November 2016East Surrey Special Interest day on Capability Brown
25 October 2016Glyndebourne Don Giovanni
23 October 2016RFH Concert
15 September 2016Royal Festival Hall Concert: Rogers and Hammerstein
08 September 2016Street Art Tour around Shoreditch
27 July 2016Guided Walk and Tea in Gatton Park
19 April 2016Trip to Lewes
04 August 2015Greywell Hill House

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Ightham Mote and Chevening House
Tuesday 01 October 2019

Report on the visit to Chevening House and Ightham Mote


It was amazing to see a 14th century medieval moated manor house (Ightham Mote) before lunch and a 17th century Inigo Jones English Palladian manor house (Chevening) after eating. Chevening was gifted to the nation in 1967 and by convention is now the country residence of the Foreign Secretary. Chevening surpassed all expectation in terms of its architectural heritage and the quality and diversity of its collection of furnishings and paintings. We were privileged to be one of only eight groups this year to be shown around for 2.5 hours by Colonel Mathewson OBE, Secretary to the Board of Trustees.
 
We sat around the conference table, as the Prime Minister and of his cabinet had done a mere two weeks before, in the magnificent first floor Tapestry Room to admire the unique collection of early 18th century wall hangings which were woven by Huguenot craftsman who had settled in Brandenburg near Berlin. We later admired the Pitt bedrooms - Pitt the Elder (The Earl of Chatham) and Pitt the Younger were two of our greatest Prime Ministers. 
 
Finally, we were treated to a sumptuous "afternoon tea" in the comfort of an equally quintessential English Drawing Room. And then at the end of the day the sun came out and we saw the large lake where Boris Johnson is known to have enjoyed rowing on when he was Foreign Secretary. A brilliant visit organised by Chris Evans.

Huw Jenkins