The Manor House

The Manor House

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The history of the Manor House estates can be traced back to the Domesday Book and earlier.

1066 – 1331

Prior to 1066 the property was owned by Siret, a vassal or servant, of King Harold. There is a reference to the Manor of Stoke in the Domesday Book survey of 1086 when it was held by William Fitz Ansculf direct from King William 1, after the King s Victory at Hastings in 1066. The family which held Stoke for nearly 300 years changed their name to de Stoke and by 1291 Amicia de Stoke had married Robert Poges from Normandy, giving rise to the present name of Stoke Poges.

The importance of the house and property rose in importance with subsequent owners:

1331- 1441

Sir John de Moleyns who married Egidia de Poges in 1325 rose to great eminence as Treasurer to Edward III. He obtained royal licence to crenellate and otherwise fortify the Manor House. His grandson was raised to the Lords and married into the family of Lord Hungerford.

1441 – 1485

The Hungerford family had a chequered history with two generations being beheaded for fighting on the wrong side during the wars of the Roses and the land became forfeit.

1485- 1581

Marriage brought the returned lands to the Hastings family who became Earls of Huntingdon. They completed the present Stoke Park Manor House in 1555. The family fell on hard times and in 1581 the House was turned over to the Crown, ending over 500 years of ownership by family descendants.

Ownership can be traced to the present day and amongst owners and occupiers were:

1581 – 1603

Elizabeth I who owned and visited the house. During this time she let it to Sir Christopher Hatton (1581 – 1591) and Sir Edward Coke (1598- 1603) Lord Chief Justice. During this time, King Charles I was imprisoned here before his trial.


King William III of Orange was refused entry by the owner, Sir Robert Gayer, a Jacobite sympathiser, who famously said, ‘He has got possession of another man’s house and he shall not enter mine.’


The Manor was owned by Sir Richard Halsey, whose daughter Anne married Sir Richard Temple, later Viscount Cobham.  The Cobhams owned Stowe as well as Stoke, and on Viscount Cobham’s death in 1749, his widow retired to Stoke Poges.   The grounds were laid out by Capability Brown in 1750.

1760- 1848

The Penns of Pennsylvania.  Thomas Penn, son of William Penn the founder of Pennsylvania purchased the Manor in 1760.  On his death in 1775 the Manor House passed to his son, John.  Having spent 28 years in Pennsylvania John Penn returned to Stoke Poges.  Finding the Manor House too dilapidated to repair he demolished three quarters of it leaving what you see today, and built a new mansion, now Stoke Park.

Sir Edward Landseer the artist had his studio here where in 1851 he is reputed to have painted Monarch of the Glen.


The House was let on a long lease by South Bucks District Council to Comer Homes and was subsequently acquired by a private buyer.

British Pathe Newsreel

A British Pathe newsreel, shot in 1941, shows the Manor House, Stoke Park and St Giles’ Church.