House & Garden
Elton is a complicated house to understand. In 1475, the Sapcotes built a medieval house and tower. The tower remains and is the first part of the house that the visitor sees. The Proby family bought the Hall and surrounding land in the mid-17th century. Since then, every generation has expanded and altered the building. During the last War, the house was occupied as a convalescent home by the Red Cross and as a result, suffered a backlog of repairs. Heavy death duties in 1947 and 1979, coupled with high taxation during those 32 years, meant much needed to be done when we arrived in 1980.
Some might ask why we took this task on. Apart from the pull of family history, we see this house and many like it, as part of the history of this country. We wish to promote, a ‘feel’ for history, to get beyond any contempt for the past, which may be driven by an erroneous notion of the stupidity of former leaders in government or society. There is much to be learnt from the lives of our ancestors, not least that our descendants could well look in amazement at how we live and what we value and do today.
Since we have been here, we have re-roofed, re-wired and re-plumbed most of the house. The pictures have been cleaned, or re-varnished, and many pieces of furniture restored together with the rooms they occupy. The gardens have been completely restored and enhanced with new borders, hedges, topiary, an Orangery, Shell Seat, modern fountain and many interesting plants.
The Hall and gardens have been gently brought to life with an increasing number of visitors during the summer months. We have several events and our thriving plant centre & restaurants are open throughout the year. We hope you enjoy the fruits of our restoration.
William & Meredyth Proby