This year, Boringdon celebrates a grand old milestone – its 430th birthday.
With a rich and varied past, we look back through the key moments in the history of “the enchanted place on the hill”.
The history of Boringdon Hall stems from the Doomsday Book, where one of the earliest mentions of a permanent construction was recorded.
Over the past 430 years Boringdon has had many prominent owners…
In 1547, Boringdon Manor became crown property and Henry VIII granted it to his courtier Thomas Wriothesley the Earl of Southampton. Not long afterwards in 1549, Thomas Wriothesley sold the Manor to Henry Grey the Duke of Suffolk and father of the fated Lady Jane Grey, who became Queen of England for only nine days in 1553. In that same year, Henry Grey sold Boringdon to Richard Mayhew of Tavistock and was passed by marriage to the Parker family in the late 15th century.
The Parker family renovated Boringdon and when work was complete in 1587, John Parker gave a great banquet in celebration of Sir Francis Drake, and his raid on the Spanish fleet in Cadiz Harbour.
Many distinguished guests attended the banquet including Sir Francis Drake himself, his brother Sir John Hawkins, Richard Grenville, Sir Walter Raleigh and William Parker (brother of John Parker). The Great Hall where the banquet took place is now much the same as it would have been 1587.
In 1588, it is thought that Queen Elizabeth I stayed at Boringdon on her progress through the West Country.
During the civil war Cromwell’s Round Head Forces destroyed the missing part of Boringdon Hall. The house was then confiscated and the Parker family fortune was lost. When King Charles II was restored to the throne in 1660 the Parker’s were rewarded for their loyalty so house and fortune were returned to them.
By the end of the century the wealth of the Parker family had increased considerably and in 1712 they purchased Saltram House, which they enlarged and remodelled to their own needs before moving out of Boringdon to their new home.
Still owned by the Parker family as recently as 1920 it was used only as a humble farmhouse. After the 1940’s, the building fell into disrepair and was semi-ruinous until it was bought in the mid 1980’s by entrepreneur Peter Malkin. Malkin bought Boringdon in a poor state of repair and spent around 18 months and £500,000 restoring, decorating and furnishing, bringing it back to its former glory as a 35-room luxury hotel. The hotel was sadly seriously damaged by fire in 1989. Fortunately, the hotel was eventually restored once again.
From 1989 to the present day, Boringdon Hall passed through several owners before the Nettleton Family purchased the hotel in 2011. The Nettleton’s bought Boringdon Hall with the intention always being to create a “destination hotel & spa”.
Today in 2017, Boringdon Hall is one of the leading hotels in the South West of England. Last year Boringdon was awarded 5-stars by the AA and named number one Hotel & Spa by the Sunday Times.
The Nettleton family and the entire team at Boringdon Hall are extremely proud to be part of Boringdon’s rich and varied history.