Markenfield Hall

One of Yorkshire's
best kept secret gems 




Tucked off the A 61, no more than a couple of miles from Bishop Monkton, is maybe one
of Yorkshire best kept secrets, Markenfield Hall, a moated medieval manor
house, mentioned in the Domesday Book and now a much loved family home. Not
visible from the road, Markenfield is perhaps a place many villagers may not
have realised was occasionally open to visitors, let alone be aware of some of
the wonderful events that are hosted there every year.

After driving along a farm track, visitors park by the side of the moat, perhaps
catching a glimpse of Roland and Sylvia, the moat’s resident black swans.
Walking over the bridge, where once stood a drawbridge, guests pass underneath
the Tudor Gatehouse and see the first glimpse of the Hall across a medieval
courtyard. Distinctively crenallated in 1310, this feature remains a feature of
the building today.

The Markenfield family owned the Hall until their fateful involvement in the Rising
of the North in 1569. This Rising was quashed and the then owner fled to the
Low Countries. The Hall and its surrounding farmland were confiscated as a
punishment for high treason and until 1761 the Hall became a tenanted farm with
an absentee landlord.

The house was bought in 1761 by Fletcher Norton, the first Lord Grantley of
Markenfield (a title still held by the family). Norton replaced the roof of the
Great Hall ensuring the house was watertight but it was not until 1980 that the
7th Lord Grantley began the Hall’s restoration turning it from a
cold and draughty farmhouse to the home that is there today.

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Open days are April 30 - May 15 
and June 11th-26th, 
2 p.m. to 5 p.m.  
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Open Days during 2016 are April 30th to May 15th and June 11th to June 26th.  2 p.m. – 5. p.m.  Admission  charges are £5 per adult.
 
Also we have a fantastic programme of speakers and events for  2016 which include Julian Fellowes, creator of Downton Abbey on April 16th, (he apparently has more viewers in China than the whole of  the U.K. put together) Professor Robert Bartlett on June 2nd. Professor Bartlett wrote and presented the BBC2 television programmes on The Normans and the Plantagenets and also the programme Inside the Medieval Mind. He is an acclaimed medieval scholar and well respected author.
Thirdly (but not finally) on November 4th Ed Stourton from Radio 4’s Today programme. Further details of these talks and all other talks and musical recitals plus how to buy tickets can be found on the website www.markenfield.com.


 


The way in

 
One of the fine rooms

 
The chapel


Photos: Tim Hardy


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