the space

Collingwood House

                                                                           a little bit of history...

Moore House became Collingwood

The house was originally built by Jesse Gregson in 1810: a family home and part of a huge estate spreading far out from Hawkhurst.

Lord Admiral Collingwood's daughter Maria came to live here, and her husband asked the admiral if they could rename the house after him - so it became Collingwood House.


Sir John Herschel the famous astronomer, and son of astronomer Sir Fredrich Wilhelm Herschel who discovered Uranus, lived here from  about 1840 until his death in 1871.  He had 12 children.

Herschel originated the use of the Julian day system in astronomy, named seven moons of Saturn and four moons of Uranus. He made many contributions to the science of photography, and investigated colour blindnesss and the chemical power of ultrviolet rays. Herschel also had a  keen botanical interest and planted beautiful specimen trees and scented azaleas here, some of which still survive. 


Collingwood became a small 'hotel of gracious living' , where families with children were especially welcome. Tales of egg throwing games on the par terre, wrestling, broken windows and lots of fun in thew drawing room and ball games in the corridors. Romanitc intrigue in the coats lobby, with notes exchanged between coat pockets!


For about 50 years, Lillesden and Bedgebury School then used Collingwood for boarding, then its kindergarten classes. Apparently Bramble Village was popular at play time.  (We are still trying to clear out those brambles!)


Finally, on April Fools Day 1999 after a long 'selling and buying process', we moved in with our four children and pets and started to renovate this beautiful Grade II* building and its gardens.  We may never quite get there, but it's a labour of love. The house is filled with the most amazing  healing energies which create a feeling of cosiness and safe space which is wonderful to share.


It has recently become home to a colony of bees, which are enjoying the wild peace of the walled garden here.