A CHRISTMAS SEASON COUNTRY HOUSE PARTY IN WEST SUSSEX
HEVER CASTLE, ASTOR WING
MONDAY 11 – THURSDAY 14 DECEMBER
For our second pre-Christmas Inscape Retreat we will have exclusive occupancy of a wing of Anne Boleyn’s childhood home, Hever Castle, in West Sussex. Built in the 13th century, Hever was the seat of the Boleyn Family. We stay in the Astor Wing, the magnificent creation of William Waldorf Astor, who purchased the Castle in 1903. Employing craftsmen who used original Tudor tools in order to retain the authenticity of the Tudor era, Astor created a Tudor style extension to the Castle. We will have the exclusive use of the Wing with its lovely common rooms and 19 luxurious bedrooms, all individually styled and graded five star.
Cosily ensconced in art-lined rooms, warmed by lively scholarship, good company, central heating and open blazing fires, we will focus on enlightened aspects of Tudor culture in Kent and Sussex, especially its fine architecture and courtly literature. Our special private visits will include Sir Philip Sidney’s ancient Penshurst Place, the enchanting historic 15th century timber-framed house, St Mary’s Bramber, and Rudyard Kipling’s Jacobean country home, Batemans where we are guided by the UK’s greatest expert on Kipling, his biographer Andrew Lycett. We discuss how the glorious Penshurst Place may have affected Sidney’s poetic imagination; what Penhurst meant to Ben Jonson, who saw it as the archetype of civilisation, what Hever, where we stay, may have meant to Ann Boleyn and her family, what Batemans meant to Kipling and what St Mary’s Bramber may still mean to the writer and composer Peter Thorogood, the greatest collector of the romantic early 19c poetry of Thomas Hood, who will offer us a special private glimpse of his collection. We pair some of the most organic and humane historic buildings in England with some of the most beautiful words in the English language as our unique celebration of the festive season.
COST £1795 Members, £1845 non-members, no Single Room Supplement, £250 deposit, includes three nights’ accommodation in Hever Castle with breakfast, morning coffee, all lunches with wine, all dinners in Hever Castle with wine, private visit to Sackville College, private visit with Mrs Fortescue and tea in Penshurst Place, private visit to St Marys Bramber, visit to Batemans, lectures by Andrew Lycett and Nicholas Friend, and all coach travel during the tour. Excludes travel to and from East Grinstead and Wadhurst.