The house was built in 1545 by Sir John Wentworth, a member of Cardinal Wolsey’s household, and hosted Royal visits by Queen Elizabeth I and her grand retinue throughout the middle of the 16th century.
Sir Thomas Millington was in residence by 1691. He reconstructed The Grand Salon which remained the state banqueting hall for a long time. During the same period he had guest rooms built above The Salon. His crest - a double-headed eagle - may be seen above the central doors on the courtyard side.
The mansion was built round a central courtyard and the west front still has a fine Tudor facade. The east front was remodelled by John Knight after he came into possession in 1715 and again later in the 18th century for Earl Nugent who also remodelled the south front and created the mile long lake. The magnificent Ballroom was added and the deer park landscaped to become a family home for the Marquis of Buckingham.
Later during the French Revolution, Gosfield Hall became the home of King Louis XVIII and his Queen Marie-Josephine-Louise of Savoy who had fled France and the guillotine to live in grand style with more than 350 courtiers and staff in attendance from 1807 to 1809.
Much restoration work was done by Samuel Courtauld who owned the house between 1854 and 1881. In the early 20th century the house was virtually abandoned but did good service as a base for troops stationed in Essex during the Second World War.
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