Longstock House

Photo:Longstock House in 1973

Longstock House in 1973

John Lewis Partnership Archives Ref:2094iii

By Gavin Henderson

The land on which Longstock House now stands came into the possession of the Third Duke of Portland by marriage during the early 18th century.  Tradition has it that he gifted the Manor of Longstock to Richard Bird, of Snoddington, the keeper of an inn at Andover, to whom he owed a debt for lodgings.  Bird settled the manor on his daughter Elizabeth who married Ralph Etwall.  Their sons Ralph and William began a hunting lodge which had rooms added to it piecemeal until a full house was completed by 1839.  This house was rebuilt by William Etwall during the early 1850s.  The Etwalls suffered financial difficulty and the new mansion had to be sold.  It was purchased in 1863 by Joseph Anderson.  He added adjoining land before selling the estate to Joshua East in 1869.  His sons, neither of whom married, inherited the property which then passed out of the East family’s possession in 1914.

Longstock was bought in 1914 by Mr DL Beddington who died before he had time to move in.  The house was substantially modernised in 1915 with the installation of electricity and telephone.  Mrs Beddington and her children lived there until her death in 1945 at which time it was bought by John Spedan Lewis.

During the Second World War ten teenage girls and their teacher from the Municipal College in Portsmouth were billeted there.  After they left John Spedan Lewis and his family moved in.  Minor repairs and alterations were carried out to the house and Lewis remained in residence until 1961.

Realising that the house would be too large for him in retirement he moved to a more modest newly built house.  Since 1961 Longstock house has been maintained for the use of the Partnership’s senior management and their guests at the discretion of the Chairman.

This page was added by Gavin Henderson on 02/06/2015.