Hodsock Priory

Ray Clarke

Doncaster, United Kingdom

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Featured in “A garden somewhere”
Featured in “The weekend photographer”

“A Garden somewhere”

People have lived at Hodsock for over two thousand years and each generation has left its mark. Bronze Age, Roman and Saxon farmers began to shape the Hodsock landscape and evidence of their food and household rubbish is still being found in the gardens. In 1086 Hodsock was recorded in the Domesday Book and from then on there is a record of every owner of the estate. This line of the Domesday book states ‘In Hodsock Wulfsi had 2 carucates of land taxable’. A carucate was 120 acres.
The Cressey family owned Hodsock from the mid-twelfth century for over 200 years. They were sufficiently powerful to entertain three kings at Hodsock: Henry II, John and Edward I. In the early thirteenth century, the Cresseys founded a hospital which specialised in caring for lepers. Part of the building can still be seen at Blyth.
At the beginning of the fifteenth century the estate passed to the Clifton family who owned Hodsock for fourteen generations, until 1765. Hodsock was never the Clifton family’s main home so they probably never spent more than was necessary on the house and estate. Even so, Hodsock was sufficiently grand to entertain Henry VIII who visited in 1541. Many of the family tombs and monuments can be seen at Clifton church near Nottingham. The family fought on the Royalist side in the Civil War in the 1640s and was heavily fined. This may be the reason why the house declined to the status of a farmhouse.In 1765 Hodsock was sold for the first and only time Hodsock was bought by the Mellish family who owned the neighbouring estate at Blyth. Combining the two estates increased the Mellish landholding to 20,000 acres. William Mellish (d.1791) and his son, Charles, were both prominent in Nottinghamshire affairs as well as being landowners.

Artwork Comments

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