ISHKAR Shopping Event

Dec 08, 2018

Come and join us in the Ballroom at Asthall Manor  for a one off Christmas shopping event with ISHKAR and LA-EVA. ISHKAR is an initiative selling contemporary craftsmanship from countries at war. Over the past few months they have been working with artisans developing new products in time for Christmas. Snap up the iconic Herati glassware, hand glazed ceramics, knitted bamboo beanies, embroidered shawls, cufflinks and lots of striking jewellery. We are also thrilled to be exhibiting their latest collection of limited edition photographic prints by photographers from Afghanistan, Syria, Mali, Yemen, Iraq and Sudan, that will be available to buy. 

ISHKAR is teaming up with local, ethical luxury beauty brand LA-EVA who specialise in organic skincare and haircare made from the purest of raw ingredients. The evolution of an artisan soap studio based in West Oxfordshire, LA-EVA creates unique, evocative products including washes, lotions and oils, inspired by a holistic philosophy on beauty and the alignment of simplicity and luxury. 

They will be in the ballroom of Asthall Manor, from 10:30 - 18:00 on Saturday the 8th of December. Expect lovely Christmas goodies, mulled wine and an abundance of festive cheer, hope to see you there!

Christmas Wreath Making Workshop

Dec 15, 2018

Theatre in the Ballroom at Asthall Manor

Jan 19, 2019


The Old House, written and performed by RADA-trained Kate Maravan, directed by Kath Burlinson

Memory, loss, mother-daughter relationships and the hokey-cokey. Revisiting The Old House, Mother and Daughter hang on to fragments of what they know. Losses surface as seawater pushes and pulls over the shingle. Grief, laughter, liberation from the known, the wonder of the ordinary ebb and flow. here’s a slender chain that links a woman in her forties with her elderly mother and her dead, unborn, child. Sometimes, it’s as fragile as silk. Sometimes it’s an anchor chain. It’s the atomic bond of love and in the end, what families are all about.

By writer-performer Kate Maravan (Improbable, The Bush, Hampstead) ‘Maravan is outstanding’ Lyn Gardner 

'Inspired by my mother, The Old House explores an alive connection to the present moment, and how distinctions between well/ill, sane/insane, young/old are less defined.’ 

Audience comments:

‘So much beauty and sadness and complexity and silliness and everything human’

‘Spectacular, detailed, alive, and compelling' 

Director Kath Burlinson, Movement director Vincent manna, Sound designer Adrienne Quartly.

Coming to Asthall Manor Ballroom on Saturday 19 January 2019 7.30pm. Tickets £15. (Includes a glass of wine or soft drink and donation to Alzheimer's Society.) To book tickets please click here

Calendar of the Rose Pruning Workshop

Jan 26, 2019

Dec 11, 2018

Asthall Manor, Ballroom and Gardens

Asthall Manor, overlooking the swans and stumpy willows of the Windrush Valley, dates from the early seventeenth century, but probably occupies a medieval site. Lady Joan Cornwall and her son Sir Edmund Cornwall are believed to have lived in it during the fourteenth century.

The present house – or an earlier version of it – was probably built for the Jones family, who occupied it until the 1670s or 1680s, followed by the Peacock family, and then, from then mid-eighteenth century and for much of the nineteenth, by the Bateman family.

The Manor was a convalescent home during the first world war, and in 1919 it was bought by Lord Redesdale, father of Nancy and the other Mitfords. It was on Asthall Manor, as well as the Redesdales’ other houses, that Nancy’s fictional Alconleigh is based. In 1926, the Manor was sold to the Hardcastle family, who retained it until 1997.

The present symmetrical appearance of the house has resulted from alterations made for the Batemans in the nineteenth century, and for Lord Redesdale in the 1920s. Lord Redesdale also converted the barn into a ballroom/library, with its huge bay window and Jacobean-style ceiling, and built the cloisters to connect this new ballroom and the rooms above it to the main house. The house was slightly reduced in size by the present owner in 1998-9.

A more extensive history of Asthall, written by R.B. Peberdy for the Victoria County History series, can be found here.

The Ballroom at Asthall Manor is available for hire for life-enhancing events. click here for details. Please note, we do not take bookings for weddings.

The gardens were designed by I & J Bannerman in 1998. Their aim was to allow the garden to flow into the Windrush Valley landscape beyond it. The gardens blend form and freedom, open views and secret spaces. Long tranquil walks bordered with sharp wedges of yew, vast beeches enclosing a hidden lake, orchards sloping down to the mill stream, stone tubs overgrown with roses and a formal box-bordered parterre provide a quintessentially English setting for fine art. Asthall Manor’s entrance is notable for the sculptures by Anthony Turner which adorn its gateposts.

The garden has recently featured in the following books: Landscape of Dreams,  Secret Gardens of the Cotswolds and English Gardens, and has been the subject of many newspaper and magazine articles, most of which can be found here.  Most recently, head gardener Mark Edwards was interviewed on his innovative techniques of rose pruning for the Telegraph's Saturday garden section.

Volunteer with us: From time to time we take volunteers in the garden through the organisation WWOOF (Worldwide opportunities on organic farms): https://www.wwoof.org.uk

Jamaica We have a small guest house in Jamaica click here for further details