In the early years of this century, the image of the English manor house was part of an idealised England. The early-20th-century admiration for ancient, weathered, picturesque manor houses of the medieval, Tudor and Stuart periods – which had often ceased to be gentry residences in the 18th century – was shared by a broad audience from Romantic Tories to Utopian Socialists, including William Morris, who leased Kelmscott Manor in Oxfordshire as his country retreat.

From 1897, the combination of the new techniques of photography – light-filled, capable of rendering extraordinary detail – with the antiquarian illustrative tradition was powerfully Romantic. Edward Hudson, the founder and proprietor of the magazine, and H. A. Tipping, its principal architectural writer, shared a taste for the past symbolised by the ancient manor house – or its image.

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  • Jane Webber

    I am trying to find your Archive Dept? I am trying to find a house that was advertised in your magazine back in the 1930’s! The house was for sale and in your magazine with ophotos of the house. I was born in that house and would love a copy and details. The house is called Broadhill Place, Ockley Lane, Hassocks, West Sussex. BN6 8PA. It was previously registered under Keymer Road, Keymer, Burgess Hill.

    I do hope you can help.

    Thank you.