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IN THE NEWS
TOUR OF THE MONTH
ON THIS DAY IN LONDON
The downfall of Wanstead House
The sad story of the long demolished Wanstead House.
Location: Wanstead Park, Wanstead
Description: Wanstead House was a magnificent country mansion costing 360,000 in 1715, when no expense was spared.
Catherine Tylney-Long inherited the property and estate in 1805 becoming overnight one of the richest and most courted young ladies in England. After many suitors tried, she fell in love with and married in 1812 the Duke of Wellington's nephew William Wellesley-Pole.
Within 10 years he had spent and wasted her entire fortune leaving debtors so upset that he fled up the Thames in a boat pursued by his creditors who then seized Wanstead House.
The House and its contents were broken up in 1824, the three children were made wards of chancery and Catherine Tylney-Long was left destitute. She died aged just 35.
The house was sold for just 10,000 and broken up leaving not a single brick remaining.
In 1715, Sir Richard Child, (a future Earl Tylney), commissioned Colen Campbell, the Scottish Architect, to design a grand mansion in the Palladian style to replace the older one on the estate. Various forest mansions had already stood here for hundreds of years.
When built it covered a massive 260x70 feet featuring a front portico with 6 Corinthian columns.
The gardens were landscaped by eminent gardener of his generation George London. It must have looked like an astonishing palace.