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Goodnestone Park, Goodnestone
(3.5/5 based on 45+ reviews on the web)
Goodnestone Park is a stately home and gardens in the southern part of the village of Goodnestone, Dover, Kent. It is approximately from Canterbury. The palladian house was built in 1704 by Brook Bridges, 1st Baronet. His grandson, Brook Bridges' daughter, Elizabeth, married Jane Austen's brother, and Austen visited them on the estate regularly. Goodnestone House is a Grade II* listed building, enlisted on 13 October 1952. The gardens are considered to be amongst the finest in southeastern England.HistoryAlthough the modern day Goodnestone House was built in 1704 by Brook Bridges, 1st Baronet, the estate was occupied during Tudor times. In 1560, Sir Thomas Engeham purchased the estate and lived in a manor house on the property. The manor was abandoned by his descendants during the reign of Anne, Queen of Great Britain, and the estate was sold to the Bridges family who had departed from their previous property at Grove House in Fulham, Middlesex. Brook Bridges, 1st Baronet evidently demolished the original manor and ordered the construction of a new palladian house. The date of the house is etched onto a brick on the main front.Not long after the house was built, extensive formal gardens developed around the house, the brainchild of William Harris. However, Sir Brook Bridges, 3rd Baronet (the grandson of Brook Bridges, 1st Baronet) replaced the gardens at the end of the 18th century with a landscape park and made several alterations to the house. He married Fanny Fowler and had a daughter, Elizabeth, who married Edward Austen, brother of the famous author Jane Austen. The young couple stayed at the house for several years before moving to nearby Godmersham and Jane was a regular guest at Goodnestone. It was after staying at Goodnestone House in 1796 that she began writing her novel Pride and Prejudice, originally named First Impressions.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • I thought this was quite expensive when compared to Comp Gardens in Kent. It cost £6.00 but although it has the making of a lovely garden, it seems that it is in need of some much needed care and atte...  more »
  • I love gardening and I love visiting gardens for inspiration. I just didn't feel the entry fee matched the state of venue. I walked around Goodnestone Park walled garden noticing the many tasks that r...  more »
  • It's a slightly shabby country house and gardens that is a pleasure to walk around. For my money more interesting than Sissinghurst (which is my new yardstick for failure). Worth a ten mile drive if y...  more »