Shaw House, Berkshire

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View of Shaw House through the gates

Shaw House is an important example of an early symmetrical H-plan Elizabethan mansion, located at Shaw, on the north-eastern outskirts of Newbury in Berkshire.

History[edit]

The manor house of Shaw, Shaw House was built by the wealthy cloth merchant, Thomas Dolman, and completed in 1581.[1] It is famous for its reputation as King Charles I's headquarters during the Second Battle of Newbury. However recent research has proved that, despite being at the centre of the fighting, the King never went to the house.[1] Other Royals have visited, most notably Elizabeth I.[1] In the 1720s, it was acquired by the flamboyant James Brydges, 1st Duke of Chandos, although it was not his main home.[1] After his death in 1744, his widow lived at Shaw House for a few years before her death. Her step-son sold the property soon afterwards to the Andrews family.[1] It was the childhood home of the historian, James Pettit Andrews.[1][2] For many years it was a school.[1]

The house is currently owned and managed by West Berkshire Council as a conference venue and public attraction.[1]

Restoration[edit]

Following a major restoration Shaw House opened to the public in 2008. It is also a conference venue and home to West Berkshire's Registration Service for Births, Deaths and Ceremonies.[1] Work began in 2005[1] after the mansion was awarded more than £4m from the Heritage Lottery Fund. English Heritage and Vodafone also contributed to the £6m project.

Visitors can now enjoy a programme of events and activities whilst wandering the house and spending time int the exhibitions and family corner. The House is open most weekends and some school holidays.

During the week the House is a meetings and conference venue open for hire complete with modern facilities.[1][2] It is also the home of the West Berkshire Registration Service, and location for register office wedding in West Berkshire.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Ford, David Nash (2011). "Shaw House". Royal Berkshire History. Nash Ford Publishing. Retrieved 8 September 2011. 
  2. ^ a b "Former king's HQ opens to public". BBC. 2008-10-27. Retrieved 2008-10-27. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 51°24′44″N 1°19′2″W / 51.41222°N 1.31722°W / 51.41222; -1.31722