A DEO ET REGE - From God and the King
Bretby Hall was the principle seat of the 5th Earl of Chesterfield, Philip Stanhope, politician and diplomat. The Hall a noble, castellated gothic mansion, embattled, surrounding a spacious quadrangular court, which had for several years been in building prior to his death 1815. The mansion was designed by Sir Jeoffrey Wyatville and W. Martin Architect, Builder. The site is an elevation of a beautiful deer park, enriched with plantations and shady groves unequelled for its extent. A small trout stream meanders through a deep glen of Bretby Park; this, in its course supplies several fish ponds.
The south facing saloon, which is circular is lighted by three windows with large wooden shutters. The ceiling, divided into compartments, is richly ornamated; from the centre is suspended an elegant chandelier. There are two matching chimney-pieces of statuary marble by Sir Richard Westmacott. The doors, very large and massive, are of mahogany, highly polished and curved in shape to match the circular room. The circular Ottoman blazing star in the centre of the room parquet floor. The couches and chairs are covered in the colour blue.
The bed rooms are superior to the most other houses in the country. The stairace and spacious passages communicating with them and the lower rooms give a decided character , and reflects considerable credit on the talent of the architects in the domestic arrangement and comfort of the whole.
-- Extract adapted from History of Derbyshire Vol II part 1, Gover 1832.
The 6th Earl of Chesterfield, George Stanhope, politician and horse owner was at Bretby Hall 1805 to 1866.
The 7th Earl of Chesterfield, George Philip Cecil Stanhope, soldier, politician and cricketer, lived at Bretby Hall 1831 until his death 1871, then passing to his widowed mother, the countess of Chesterfield, Anne Elizabeth, a great friend of the 1st Earl of Beaconsfield 1804- 1881 who often visited Bretby Hall to see the countess.
Through the children of the countess of Chesterfield, Ann Elizabeth, the hall passed to the 4th Earl of Carnarvon in 1875, Henry Howard Molyneux Herbert 1831 – 1890 known as Lord Porchester 1833 to 1849, politician, secretary of State for the Colonies and served as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland.
Bretby Hall passed to the 5th Earl of Carnarvon, George Edward Stanhope Molyneux Herbert who funded the Excavation of Tutankhamun and owned the hall until his death in the same year (1923).
Like many heritage stately homes including Highclere Castle, Bretby Hall served the public as a hospital for a brief passage of time in its history from 1926 to 1997. Although subsequently some parts were converted to apartments (sales of which can be seen here Apartments for sale) the main part of the hall now grade II* listed, surrounding the grand staircase remain as one and intact, including many of the original features, such as the grand staircase with marble floors, drawing room, parquet floors and Westmacott marble chimney-pieces of the turret saloon. This was at the request of the restoration company ran by Nick Challener and first owner Charles Walsh. The rooms, marble and grand stairs have been restored in a manor to reflect that described by Glover 1832. All the current residents are keen to maintain and safeguard this important part of our heritage allowing future discoveries as significant as the prior owners, the 5th Earl of Carnarvon.