The story so far Court House Farm
The delightful enclave of medieval and Tudor buildings which make up Court House Farm stead have an atmosphere all of their own.
Set within the conservation parish of Saint Peter's, within a short walk of the High Street, they have been lovingly saved from dereliction in the recent past. The originally medieval site is steeped in history, some of it still to be discovered.
The huge barn and courtyard, outbuildings and stables all sit within a four acre site and the beginnings of the 'Garden Hamlet' we hope to create. There's magic in the air..........
During our short association and love affair with Court House Farm we have come across some touching memories. It seems that the delightful Gertie Gale and her family who had the farming tenancy from the early 1900's until the early 2000’s were a hugely important part of the Portishead community and brought much joy to many local people. Her niece, relatives, past residents and local characters have told us many stories which at some point are definitely worthy of turning into a theatre production!
In the meantime there is still much to do. After Gertie died the buildings began to fall into serious disrepair until the site was purchased at auction by the Spittalfields Trust. Having just kept the house and outbuildings watertight and mowed the meadows for those years, the trust felt they had done their bit and so the site ‘found’ us ! It certainly wasn’t in our plans to take on this enormous renovation programme, but it seems ‘The Manor’ (as some people know it), had other ideas: it needed ‘someone' ‘to bring it back to life and restore its beauty.
Several years on, we have sensitively renovated the stunning larger Tudor 'Tower House’ (during which we discovered that, astonishingly, our heating engineer, Ben Chappell, is a descendant of the Chappell's who lived at Court House Farm in the 1600's), completed the renovation of the ‘once green with damp’ Little medieval Manor, and made good many of the outbuildings and the overall site itself, including bringing the land back from bleak tree less muddy fields and concrete filled yards, to the beginnings of a stunning Garden Hamlet.
This year we aim to complete the basic layout of our gardens, (although in their babyhood) and plant an amazing wonder bio fuel crop called Miscanthus Giganteus to start to divide the gardens and create a feeling of privacy. Watch this space, as we hope you can join us as Court House Farm, 'The Manor’, comes alive again and invites you in to share its unique atmosphere!