King Henry VIII’s medieval mansion on the market

LONDON – Henry VIII’s former London home is on the market for £26-million (about R364-million).

It dates back more than 500 years and once played host to lords and countrymen.

The Old Rectory, a Tudor mansion in Merton, south London, was once owned by the king and was built in the early 1500s. The medieval mansion, set in large grounds, has views of the All England Tennis Club.

The palatial grade two listed building boasts 10 bedrooms, nine bathrooms, eight reception rooms and a medieval chapel – the oldest part of the house. Over half a millennium the Tudor mansion hosted the likes of Lord William Cecil Burghley, Elizabeth I’s principal advisor and first minister.

Its gardens were designed by the landscaper responsible for Hampton Court Palace and include rolling lawns, a medieval fig tree trail and pond.

The asking price is 2000 times higher than the price it commanded in the 1950s.

Norman Plastow, president of the Wimbledon Society historical group, viewed the house in 1953.

He said: “I went over it in detail and I have been there several times since.

“There are interesting things like a tunnel by the study.

“There’s a very thick piece of wall and a builder who worked on it opened it up and found an underground tunnel but we never found out where it went.

“One of my favourite parts was that to get up to the top- floor attic you opened a cupboard and inside the cupboard was a staircase which finished at knee level and you pulled a handle and out came two more steps.” ©The Telegraph

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