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Report - Great Tew Manor House, Oxfordshire - May 2012

Discussion in 'Residential Sites' started by Mr I Saw 123, May 29, 2012.

  1. Mr I Saw 123

    Mr I Saw 123 28DL Full Member
    28DL Full Member

    Mar 31, 2012
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    G T Manor

    Explored with Jasper B

    A light-hearted report with a bit of history added.​

    Having viewed many superb reports from this site, I was indeed in “Great Expectations”. A gloriously hot British day and yes to all our overseas readers. We do get good weather (well sometimes). I mention the Dickens novel because this is how this place reminds me. Once inside you get that feeling you have just stepped onto a film set. The likes of the fictitious Satis house, whose owner a Miss Havisham dwelled.

    Unlike “Pip”, from the story, my intentions were not the same. As a middle aged man being discovered would be the least of my worries. How would I explain that I was there to play even at the request of Miss Havisham with a young girl? While she watched! You would have to read the book to understand the joke. Or perhaps it’s just my strange way of thinking.:crazy

    Unlike the mouldy wedding banquet in the book each and every room did prove to be the icing on the cake. A very easy explore, we spent 3 ½ hours there. The familiar sweet and musty smell that you only get with age and history was ever present.

    Although it was relaxed, the feeling you get of being watched by all that have stood there before. It is a calm place but don’t let that fool you. As a very old building there’s still an element of risk. The floors creek and grown for a reason and the metal supports are not there to make the place look pretty. I did mention to Jasper that I did feel as well as hear a bit of the floor fall away when I walked over it:eek:. I know I am no lightweight but, seriously you should take care!

    Talking of weight I was so engrossed in the place I forgot all about the rest of the world and even eating, perhaps why this was not a fail as no mention of all-day-breakfasts were on this trip. That’s how much I hold this place in regard. It is like the jewel in the crown.

    Even though the rooms are empty other than the odd chair (I would like to thank all those who have chair fetishes etc and those who also leave the doors ajar at what seems like the right angle for photographing. It is like a set each time that is crying out to be taken a shot of).:thumb


    Some history

    After the death of Major Eustace Robb in 1985 the contents of the house were auctioned off two years later (May 1987), by Christies.
    The Major inherited the Estate in 1962 He did his best to turn the place around from its gradual dilapidation over the years. Surrounding sites were also included in the program. According to one web site, the Major was a good man. Although there are contradictions as another site holds this quote from 1972 by Jennifer Sherwood and Sir Nikolaus Pevsner. “One of the most depressing sights in the whole county. Terraces of cottages lie derelict (1972) and will soon be beyond hope of restoration. A scheme of gradual rehabilitation is said to be in progress, but nothing has been done meanwhile to prevent the decay of unused cottages, some of which are completely ruinous and will need to be entirely rebuilt. (Quoted from Wikipeadia)

    Again, quoted from the Wikipeadia site: In 1978 another academic authority described Major Robb's treatment of Great Tew as a "notorious example" that had "demonstrated that a single-minded or neglectful owner can still cause both the community and the village fabric to die"

    In 1985 the site passed to the Johnston family, who have moved forward in restoring the Manor and surrounds. The local Ironstone quarry has since reopened (2000). This is serving to provide new materials for the buildings restoration and future.

    On with the images, I have tried to put a different perspective on them. This place has been done many times and many of the same images taken on each occasion. I hope you enjoy them.










    I know there are plenty who don’t like HDR images, but just as others have said before me, this room is a hard one to hold all the detail in the exposure. We had to be quick as the neighbours were taking afternoon tea in the garden.


    The last shot is just to show that even in a magnificent building like this one, there’s always an odd shot that still has that quirky edge. I have added this chiefly to help those who are none photographers. It is about shape and form and making a composition out of anything and not being scared to try something different.


    It didn’t taste too bad either – Made up for that all-day-breakfast :p:

    Thanks For Looking ​
    #1 Mr I Saw 123, May 29, 2012
    Last edited: May 29, 2012

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