Athelhampton’s history and that of its inter-related families covers more than a thousand years. Much of the present house has stood over five centuries.
Sir William Martyn built the Hall at Athelhampton in about the year of 1485 and received a license to enclose 160 acres of deer park and fortify his manor. The house remained in the Martyn family for the next 4 generations when the house was then passed to four daughters, the shares of the house were not re-united until 1848.
Through successive owners the house was eventually purchased by Alfred Cart de Lafontaine in 1891, who set about restoring the house and creating the formal gardens we see today.
In 1957, Robert Victor Cooke purchased the house, and in 1966 he gave Athelhampton to his son Sir Robert Cooke MP. Today Sir Robert’s son Patrick and his wife Andrea run Athelhampton and continue to improve and renovate the House and Gardens to protect it for generations to come.
Photo’s credited to Country Living circa 1899