Aynhoe Park was originally built in 1615, but it has been rebuilt, remodelled and embellished many times since then, as time, tragedy and the imagination of its owners changed its face across the centuries.

The site itself has been in use since the 12th century, becoming home to the Cartwright family when John Cartwright bought the original house in 1615. Just 30 years later, Aynhoe Park was all but destroyed in the Civil War, and required rebuilding, more or less from scratch.

In 1707, Cartwright’s grandson Thomas enlisted the great architect Thomas Archer to enlarge his Jacobean home. Many of Archer’s Baroque touches, such as the grand main staircase, survive – as do the embellishments introduced by Sir John Soane, who remodelled Aynhoe in 1798.

In 2006, James Perkins bought Aynhoe Park following the dissolution of the Country Houses Association, which had converted the building into a number of flats.

In the years that followed, James and his wife, Sophie undertook the monumental challenge of restoring Aynhoe – remaining true to the creative vision of Archer and Soane while introducing a bold but sympathetic sensibility of their own.

The original Jacobean style rubs shoulders with Palladian grandeur and Baroque opulence, all set within private landscaped gardens and parkland planned by Capability Brown over 250 years ago.

Aynhoe Park became the backdrop for wonderful weddings and notable events, and featured in several major fashion campaigns. The couple's passion for detail and entertaining meant that every Aynhoe party was unforgettable with Aynhoe Park acclaimed the best venue in the world in 2021.

Agent Provocateur
Paul Smith

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