Forty Hall glows in the new spring sunlight. It is stunning in the springtime. The birds around the pond to the back of the house bathe in the water, ignoring the steady stream of passers-by. Sometimes you see the pigeons being chased by toddlers, but the probable cause of any disturbance is from the large groups of school children that visit the estate on one of their educational school trips.
I took a day off work this week to volunteer for one of these workshops for students and I had such a fun time that I decided to write about the old house for you all.
Sir Nicholas Rainton, the original owner of the house, instructed the building of Forty Hall between 1629 and 1632 (actually if you look up at the ceiling of the Great Chamber you can see 1629 engraved on it). Rainton was a wealthy London merchant. He chose the site of his home because of its close proximity to London (which was much smaller in the seventeenth century) and because Enfield was far enough away from the city to be free from the plague and other diseases that contaminated it. You can find out more about Rainton and his life here.
I really just wanted to write about this place so that more people know that it exists. The property is on the London Overground, and it’s a short walk from Turkey Street station. Or you can drive there, there’s a large car park. Next to the house is a lovely little café, or, you could even take a picnic on a sunny day and settle down on the grass – I can’t tell you the amount of times I have done this. Take a stroll through the woodland around too. It’s amazing how much beauty there is so close to where I live. Every time I visit I am genuinely awestruck.
There’s also a farm and a farm shop, plus a barn where festivals and gigs are often held.
Next week the museum is being rearranged to reflect the how the house looked in different time periods. Once this has been done I’ll be sure to write a more comprehensive post about the hall.
Seriously, if you fancy something different, then hop on a train and visit this hall. It is something special. Check out the Forty Hall website for news about events etc.