Saturday15th July 2017
We had planned to spend today making a visit to an Antiques Fair at Ludlow Race Course, but we awoke to a rather wet morning and as it appeared it was more antiques than brick a brac we decided to change plans. Instead we decided to visit a NT property,free to us as members, where if necessary we could spend time indoors, Shugborough was our choice.
It is sited on the edge of Cannock Chase south of Stafford and the original building/land was owned by the Bishops of Lichfield until the dissolution of monasteries, eventually it was purchased in 1624 by William Anson.
The house and grounds stayed in the hands of the Anson family until 2010 during which time one of the family was made an earl, as often is the case with these large historical houses and grounds, death duties made it impossible to continue and it was passed to the NT in lieu of death duties. The 5th Earl, Patrick Lichfield noted photographer, lived there until his death in 2010.
The Georgian house is very interesting with its “above stairs” rooms and below stairs servants areas, kitchen laundry etc. The NT are developing the upper storey to showcase Patrick Lichfield.
Park Farm on the estate is well worth a visit with a fascinating display of how it’s occupants/ workforce lived and worked in the 1800s , some of the land is still farmed and there is a herd of longhorn cows.
There are a range of other buildings and follies in the grounds of 900 acres.