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Basildon Park added to National Trust in South East by clinkadink on 10/09/2023

Parking & TOAL: 51.493479, -1.115587

The masterpiece of John Carr of York, this Palladian villa was built for Sir Francis Sykes between 1776 and 1783. It is a beautifully balanced building of warm Bath stone consisting of a main central block joined to individual pavilions by single-storey linkages.

Sykes was the youngest son of a Yorkshire yeoman farmer who made a fortune working for the East India Company on the great Sub-Continent. He held many important posts including Factor & Chief of Kasimbazara and resided at the Court of the Nawab of Bengal, until ill-health forced him to return to England in 1768. He bought Basildon from the estate of Viscount Fane, three years later. Sykes was a close friend of Warren Hastings, the Governor-General of India, who lived at nearby Purley Hall and, along with a number of other 'nabobs' resident in the vicinity, he helped give Berkshire its reputation of being the "English Hindoostan". He was created a baronet in 1781.

Basildon was inherited by Sir Francis' grandson and namesake in 1804, when parts of the house were still incomplete. Unfortunately, Sir Francis Junior inherited massive debts from his spendthrift father and, in 1838, the estate was sold to James Morrison MP, one of the richest of the early Victorian merchant princes. He was a famous art-lover who became instrumental in the setting up of the National Gallery. He exclaimed of Basildon, "What a casket to enclose pictorial gems!". His architect, John Papworth, undertook a number of sympathetic alterations at the house between 1837 and 1842, after which the family took up full residence in the best of Victorian traditions.

The last of the Morrisons died in 1910, after which Basildon often stood empty. It was used as a convalescent home for Berkshire regimental soldiers during the Great War, but subsequently fell into an increasing state of dilapidation. The estate was purchased by the 1st Lord Iliffe in 1928 in order to expand his Yattendon lands and the house was sold on to a George Ferdinando. This man had planned to have the place systematically demolished and re-erected in the United States! A scheme which, fortunately, never came to fruition, though many of the decorative fittings can now be seen in the Waldorf Astoria Hotel.

Miraculously, in 1952, Basildon was repurchased by Lord Iliffe's son and his new bride who set about restoring the place to its present splendour. Many fixtures and fittings were bought from other country houses whose fate was not so fortunate.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basildon_Park

Land owner permission not required.

View and discuss this location in more detail on Grey Arrows.

Co-ordinates: 51.49878, -1.121342 • what3words: ///stealthier.curated.tumble

The originator declared that this location was not inside a Flight Restriction Zone at the time of being flown on 10/09/2023. It remains the responsibility of any pilot to check for any changes before flying at the same location.

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One word of warning, the seagulls were a real pain.

Land owner permission requirements unknown.

View and discuss this location on Grey Arrows.

Co-ordinates: 51.32148, 0.898324 • what3words: ///decorator.inflamed.comb

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It consists of three long barrows, a mortuary enclosure and nearly forty round barrows.

Land owner permission obtained.

View and discuss this location on Grey Arrows.

Co-ordinates: 51.16788, -1.842399 • what3words: ///atoms.dentistry.sand

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Land owner permission not required.

View and discuss this location on Grey Arrows.

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Land owner permission not required.

View and discuss this location on Grey Arrows.

Co-ordinates: 56.81063, -2.653256 • what3words: ///rejected.archduke.headstone

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Possibly by Anthony Salvin (1799-1881).

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Land owner permission requirements unknown.

View and discuss this location on Grey Arrows.

Co-ordinates: 53.06624, -1.248971 • what3words: ///shuts.handicaps.presumes

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https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:The_Ailesbury_Column,_Savernake_Forest_-_geograph.org.uk_-_153435.jpg

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Belly_Oak

Land owner permission requirements unknown.

View and discuss this location on Grey Arrows.

Co-ordinates: 51.38073, -1.668119 • what3words: ///pronouns.bleak.rail

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You can park on the local roads, and TOAL is available from many areas around the church

Land owner permission requirements unknown.

View and discuss this location on Grey Arrows.

Co-ordinates: 51.0938, -2.894266 • what3words: ///dubbing.woodstove.mattress

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Land owner permission requirements unknown.

View and discuss this location on Grey Arrows.

Co-ordinates: 57.51508, -6.573463 • what3words: ///contemplate.childcare.mouse

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Land owner permission requirements unknown.

View and discuss this location on Grey Arrows.

Co-ordinates: 55.05091, -3.59386 • what3words: ///bloomers.pretty.sprayed

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Parking: free

Note: do NOT park on the road adjacent as per the photo, as it goes further up to the former Engine Masters House and others. You can walk up and see the engine masters house.
There is also a Georgian Bridge but the overhead section above the road is no longer there.

Land owner permission not required.

View and discuss this location on Grey Arrows.

Co-ordinates: 54.62484, -1.672406 • what3words: ///pursuing.thrillers.guarding


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