Throwback Thursday: Harpenden’s historic manor

PUBLISHED: 12:48 28 February 2019

Harpenden's Rothamsted Manor on a 1908 postcard. Picture: John Cooper

Harpenden's Rothamsted Manor on a 1908 postcard. Picture: John Cooper


Our throwback Thursday highlight aims to show just how much the town has changed and evolved over time, using old pictures of what it used to be like.

Over the years, Rothamsted Manor has been utilised for a variety of purposes - but it has always been a beautiful building surrounded by immaculate gardens.

Currently, this idyllic scene is the venue for weddings and in the recent past has hosted a summer café.

However, in 2009, the Manor was used as accommodation for scientists and students researching at Rothamsted Research.

Some of the framework in the entrance dates as far back as the 13th century, although much of the exterior appears to be from the 17th century.

Rothamsted Manor.Rothamsted Manor.

The interior was also lavish and had a large elm table which dated back to 1520, but was sold in 1936 for 35 guineas. The manor today still looks very similar as it does in the photos.

Anne Wittewronge bought Rothamsted Manor from Edward Bardolph in 1623 as a widower and mother to her son John. The estate then continued to be inherited by family members through generations.

This was until John Bennett Lawes, who became the Founder of Rothamsted Experimental Station, was born there in December 1814.

This particular snapshot, from the collection of pictorial historian John Cooper, is a postcard dated 1908.

Rothamsted ManorRothamsted Manor

The sender wrote: “Many thanks for letter, was very pleased to hear you are alright. This is where I live. What do you think of it? Much love, L Baldwin.”

John Cooper has written A postcard from Harpenden, Harpenden Through Time, Harpenden: The Postcard Collection, and Harpenden: A Village in Wartime, which was published on October 15.

Do you have an old picture to share? Let us know at enjoyhapendenmore@archant.co.uk x

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