Saturday, 2 July 2011

Markenfield Hall

What better way to spend a weekend afternoon than visting one of England's oldest continuously inhabited houses? Markenfield Hall stands as a moving testimony to the history of the region from before 1310 until the present day. It is first mentioned in the Doomesday book, was expanded by the Markenfield family who played a significant part in the Pilgrimage of Grace (1536) and the Rising of the North (1569) during the Reformation period, and then developed by the Grantleys from the eighteenth century until its recent twentieth century restoration by the Grantleys and the Curteises. The Markenfields were a loyal Catholic family who contributed at great cost to themselves to the resistance to the Protestant Reformation. Although the chapel was briefly used as a Protestant place of worship it eventually fell into disuse. Fittingly, it was restored in 2001 and Mass is regularly celebrated in the chapel today. Anglican (BCP) services are also held frequently. House and chapel are briming with history - stories from almost every period that bring the families who inhabited the house to life. Sir Ian and Lady Curteis open their home to the public for 28 days every year and the services in the chapel are also open to the public. It is an enhchanting and hospitable and place where you feel that you are touching the deep roots of English history!

The Hall is situated on the A61 between Ripley (Harrogate) and Ripon.

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