Eltham was home to royalty in the 15th century. King Henry VIII grew up and raised his own children there. More recently, E Nesbit wrote some of her wonderful novels for children at Well Hall and an amazing art deco house was built in the 1930s.

Eltham Palace

In the 14th and 15th centuries, the palace at Eltham was a favourite royal residence. It was not only convenient for monarchs who wished to travel to and from France, but also a refreshing distance from London which, at the time, was rife with disease and plague. Oh - and it had a rather lovely view.

However, Tudor royalty preferred Greenwich, Eltham Palace was neglected, and the Great Hall was used as a barn. The parks in Eltham were stripped of timber for shipbuilding, and then used for farming. In the 1660s, however, the manor was leased by Sir John Shaw, who built an elegant mansion there. The park has now become a golf course, and the mansion, Eltham Lodge, is the headquarters of the Royal Blackheath Golf Club.

Eltham Palace itself remained neglected until the 1930s when Stephen and Virginia Courtauld moved there and built an art deco mansion which adjoins the medieval great hall.

The Tudor Barn

The Tudor Barn is all that remains of the 11th century country mansion that was built for Sir Thomas More's daughter Meg. The 16th century building has been charmingly restored.

The tranquil grounds, known as Well Hall Pleasaunce, contain a medieval moat and a scented garden.

Find out more information on the Tudor Barn website

Did you know?

Edith Nesbit, author of The Railway Children, lived in a house in the grounds of what later became Well Hall Pleasaunce from 1899 to 1921.