Venue Name: Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club
Location: Wych Cross, nr Forest Row, East Sussex RH18 5JR
Please tell us a little about Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club’s history.
The original mansion house was built in the early 1800s and passed through several owners until June 1919, when the estate was once more put up for sale. In the July, Sister Marie Saint Agnes of the Order of the Notre Dame visited Ashdown Park and considered it ideal for convent purposes. In 1919 she was requested by the Mother General to find a property suitable for a training establishment for the novices, and was able to purchase Ashdown Park for the Order quite cheaply as most of the trees had been felled. In the spring of 1920 the first Sisters of Notre Dame, together with 33 novices, arrived at Ashdown Park.
Although the house was too small for convent purposes, stone was quarried from the grounds and the extensions to the building were planned.
In 1922 the West Wing was completed, the Church of Our Lady and St Richard in 1924, and the East Wing in 1938. The Church, consecrated in 1927, was particularly beautiful with marble from Italy, Switzerland and Sweden. Harry Clarke of Dublin designed and manufactured the Sanctuary Windows where 35 shades of blue were used in addition to other colours. Geoffrey Webb of East Grinstead executed the stained glass windows in the Lady Chapel.
The Nuns remained happily at Ashdown Park for almost fifty years until the United States International University took over in 1971. The Roman Catholic Church deconsecrated the Chapel, and the USIC renamed it.
The University did not stay long and in 1974 Ashdown Park was conveyed to Barclays Bank for use as a Management Training Centre, which remained until it was sold to Elite Hotels on 1st February 1993 and turned into the luxury hotel it is today.
What type of venue is Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club?
Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club is a luxurious Country House Hotel set in the heart of the Ashdown Forest in East Sussex, with 106 individually-styled bedrooms and suites. It offers wedding ceremonies and receptions which cater from two up to 150 people.
Which rooms at Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club are licensed for wedding ceremonies?
The John Haywood Suite, Jacob Henniker Suite, Henry Smart Suite and the Summer House are all licensed for wedding.