BELHUS: The name ‘Belhus’ was used by early residents, the Barretts Family, of a manor as early at the 1300s. Over the centuries, this family bought surrounding land, rebuilt the manor into a grand Tudor house (1520s) and designed a park with the help of the famous landscaper Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown (1750-60s).
During World War 2, Belhus house was badly damaged and was eventually demolished by Essex County Council (1957), which has since turned part of the parkland into a golf course and leisure facility.
Site info: Country Park open 8:00am - 4:30pm with visitor centre, café and toilet facilities.
Contact: 01708 865628 firstname.lastname@example.org
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DAGNAM: Richard Neave (a wealthy London tradesman of the West Indies) bought the Dagnam estate in 1772 and during his ownership he commissioned a new Georgian house to be built (two others house had already existed and pulled down!) In the following centuries, Neave’s descendants bought the surrounding land and the estate expanded to 1600 acres (over 1200 football fields.)
But in 1919, after the first world war, Sir Thomas Neave 5th Baronet auctioned the land and the Neave family only kept 550 acres, including the house.
During the Second World War the family moved out to another home for safety; Dagnam house sustained heavy damage and could not be repaired; It was demolished in 1950.
Site info: Park open 8am-8pm or 30mins before dusk.
Contact: 01708 434743 email@example.com