Welcome to the Ballroom and Barn Flat, Asthall Manor
To rent our self-catering apartment, please contact Manor Cottages.
The Ballroom and the bedrooms above it were converted from a barn by Lord Redesdale in 1919-20, and became the private domain of the older Mitford children, a glorious parent-free and servant-free idyll, connected to the main house by the covered walkway or cloisters.
In “A life of contrasts”, Diana Mitford writes:
This large room, furnished with hundreds of old books, a grand piano and sofas, with high windows looking south and east, was all the world to my brother Tom and me at Asthall. He played all day, Bach, Mozart, Brahms, and I lay on a sofa, reading and listening.” The library/music room became known as “The Ballroom” after Nancy Mitford’s coming-out Ball was held there in 1922.
Above the library were four bedrooms, one of which is now a kitchen. These were occupied by the older Mitford children.
The murals in the yellow bedroom were painted by Nancy Mitford. She was a student at the Slade School of Art for a month in 1924 but, famously, came home having found London life, with no servants to pick up her clothes, intolerable.
The names painted above the doors are a manifestation of the Mitfords’ fondness for giving everything a nickname. Hoyden was the name of a family yacht, as well as a word meaning a boisterous or saucy girl, and Wilbury was the house where Lady Redesdale had lived as a child.
The rooms above the Ballroom now form our self-catering holiday apartment, available to let through Manor Cottages.