Stratfield Saye House & Estate, Reading

4.2
#4 of 10 in Historic Sites in Reading
Stratfield Saye House is a large stately home at Stratfield Saye in the north-east of the English county of Hampshire. It has been the home of the Dukes of Wellington since 1817.Early historyThe Manor of Stratfield Saye was created by the joining of two older manors. In the 12th century Stratfield was owned by the Stoteville family, and then early in the 13th century this passed by marriage to the Saye family.Before 1370 the manor passed on again by marriage to the Dabridgecourts, and in 1629 they sold the property to the Pitt family, cousins of the great father-and-son Prime Ministers.The main part of the house was extensively enlarged around 1630 by Sir William Pitt, Comptroller of the Household to King James I. Sir William's eldest son, Edward Pitt (1592-1643), MP, of Steepleton Iwerne, Dorset and later of Stratfield Saye, bought the estate for £4,800 in 1629. Further extensive alterations were carried out to the house and park in the 18th century by George Pitt, 1st Baron Rivers.Purchase by the stateThe estate was sold to the nation in 1817, in order that it could be given by a grateful nation to the victorious Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington. They gave 600,000 pounds for the construction of a splendid Waterloo Palace to rival the magnificence of Blenheim Palace, home of the Dukes of Marlborough. The Hampshire site Wellington chose in 1817 was the 5000acre estate of Stratfield Saye, home of the Pitt family. He was advised on the purchase by the architect Benjamin Dean Wyatt who had once been his private secretary. He originally planned to demolish the existing house, and replace it with a more prestigious home, to be known as Waterloo Palace. The Duke abandoned these plans in 1821 when they proved to be too expensive, and subsequently made numerous additions and improvements to the existing building. All but the 1st and 6th Dukes are buried at Stratfield Saye House.
Use our Reading trip planner to arrange your visit to Stratfield Saye House & Estate and other attractions in Reading.
Source
Create an itinerary including Stratfield Saye House & Estate
map
Stratfield Saye House & Estate Reviews
Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
65 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • August 21, 2017
    The tour guides are very knowledgeable and passionate and they have a wide knowledge of the house, it's history and of the family. The tour is quite comprehensive and features some of the bedrooms inc...  more »
  • August 14, 2017
    Stratfield Saye house has very limited opening, but the house is well worth a visit. The 2 guides who accompanied our group gave a very good insight into the history of the house, its owners and conte...  more »
  • August 10, 2017
    Very interesting place to visit with my granddaughter. Nice pace round the house. We had three guides contributing to the visit. All very informative although one did not speak very clearly and my gra...  more »
Google
  • We spent a wonderful afternoon here last Autumn. This is more than a grand house, it is the beautifully preserved bijou home of a great man, who won countless battles for the empire all over Europe and Asia, but who we seem to have more recently forgotten. The story of the Duke of Wellingtons' rise through the Army is amazing. He was a obviously a great strategist and the most remarkable of leaders. The house is modest for such a large figure, the decorator in me especially loved the hand painted wallpaper. The museum is full of interesting facts about the period and the funeral carriage and sound effects of the huge funeral march is amazing. Only thing that let it down a bit was the tea shop!
  • It's beautiful
    View original

Plan your trip to Reading

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Where to stay in Reading

Browse hotels, guesthouses, and unique homes and book your stay on the world's leading accommodation sites.
Live like a local, find unique places to stay
Millions of travel reviews on TripAdvisor

Plans in Reading by other users

4 days in Reading, Windsor & Maidenhead BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM October, popular PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Reading BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM December, popular PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Reading BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM December, popular PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Berkshire BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM December, popular PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 1 day in Reading BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM January, popular PREFERENCES: January ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Reading BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM November, kids, popular PREFERENCES: November, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Reading BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 10 days in London & Reading BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, fast-paced, popular PREFERENCES: October, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Fast-paced 3 days in Reading BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Reading BY A USER FROM PORTUGAL September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Reading BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Reading BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
View more plans