Report - - Dinton Folly, Bucks, June 2016 | Other Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - Dinton Folly, Bucks, June 2016


28DL Regular User
Regular User
This was an opportunist mini-explore while visiting friends. Easy access and quite a modest site but you really can't beat a good folly explore.

Located just north of the village of Dinton, Buckinghamshire, it was built by Sir John Vanhatten in 1769 as an 'eye-catcher' from Dinton Hall, constructed on a Saxon burial ground. He used the castle to store his collection of fossils in the limestone walls (man after my own heart!). According to Rev. Callander (formerly of Dinton), it was latterly used as a temporary meeting place for a local non-conformist congregation with a tarpaulin as a makeshift roof. The ruin is said to be haunted by the ghost of John Bigg (a.k.a. the Dinton Hermit) who used to live in a nearby cave under Dinton Hall in the 17th Century, until his death in 1696. Bigg was a clerk to Simon Mayne, an Aylesbury magistrate and MP, who owned Dinton Hall. Mayne was one of the judges at the trial of King Charles I in 1649, and it is said Bigg may have been one of the hooded executioners of the king.

The Folly was originally three storeys high and was inhabited by some of Vanhatten's servants. It is octagonal with circular towers to the east and west. The west tower has fireplaces at each storey and the east tower had a 'newel' staircase. Ammonites of all sizes are set into the limestone walls. It was scaffolded for years but in recent times had some stabilisation repair work done on it. More recently the Grade II listed building was sold at auction in 2012 for £56,000, below the asking price of £75,000. The new owner, Mr Brett O’Connor, has pledged to restore the building using authentic limestone from the area and estimates it could be completed within five years. The plan is to restore it back to a three-storey building with a staircase in the east tower and fireplace on each floor.

OK…on with the pictures.

The ruin stands well in the trees:

img5730 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img5732 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Previous stabilisation attempted utilised wooden triangles!

img5728 by HughieDW, on Flickr

The East tower:

img5726 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Some of the many Portland ammonites set in the walls by John Vanhatten:

img5725 by HughieDW, on Flickr
img5723 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img5720 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img5719 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img5716 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Fireplaces in the western tower:

img5715 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img5713 by HughieDW, on Flickr

This new trench appears to expose a bricked-up former entrance to the folly:

img5707 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Thanks for looking!


Bart. S

28DL Member
28DL Member
This building has now been fully refurbished, not sure if it's privately owned or its a government funded scheme

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