THE MANOR // LEICESTERSHIRE
Many visitors are curious about the history of The Manor house itself so here is a bit of detail as far as we are aware. If you know any further history of the house, please do let us know!
The Manor house which you now see in Tur Langton dates back to the early 1600s - the reign of King James I. However, there is evidence
that it replaced a much larger medieval house on the same site probably built and resided in by the Maunsell family, who were lords
of the manor and also built the ancient chapel of ease before 1162 the remains of the chapel’s north doorway stands in the field to the
northeast of the manor house. It was a small chapel with a single bell and the field was never consecrated as a burial ground - St Peter’s at Church Langton, served as the mother church. The chapel at Shangton survives and is a slightly later (13th Century), but similar
building. The chapel had fallen into a state of disrepair when it was replaced by the victorian, St Andrew’s church, on Main Street (1866)
and was subsequently demolished. As another point of interest, the two lions in the front churchyard guard the graves of the Hayr family,
who were owners of The Manor until the 1930s when it was sold to Merton College, Oxford. The lions once graced the front steps of The Manor.
The Manor was originally built on an H plan, however, all that is left is the central range (which originally formed the ‘great hall’) and part of the north cross-wing. It is said that the south cross-wing was demolished in the late 18th century after a fire had left it badly damaged. Some of the stone from the demolished wing, may have been carted over the hill and used in modernisations carried out on West Langton Hall by the owner Rev. Ord (circa 1802)-? To give you some idea as to the size of the house in its original state, Richard Halford (d. 1681) was assessed for a house at Tur Langton with 15 hearths in the hearth tax returns of 1666.
The existence in the house of 'Faunt's room' in the late 18th century led to the belief that it was built by a Faunt. Henry Faunt (died 1665) was listed in his will of 1664 as ‘of Tur Langton’ not as ‘of Foston’, the Faunt family home [Henry Faunt’s effigy can be seen on his tomb in St Bartholomew’s Church at Foston, Near Countesthorpe]. It must certainly be associated with the families of Halford of Wistow and Faunt of Foston, who intermarried, but the exact ownership has not been discovered, probably due to their Royalist activity during the Civil War.
Interestingly, another legend of Tur Langton, could be loaned some credence by the Faunt/Halford association to The Manor. That being of King Charles Well, which is located in the pasture at the eastern end of the village, a chalybeate (mineral rich) spring; which was named from the legend that Charles I stopped to water his horse on his flight from the Battle of Naseby. This is made more likely when it is documented that Richard Halford and his son and heir, Andrew were the most prominent Royalists in the area; Richard’s second son George, married Henry Faunts’ daughter, Elizabeth. King Charles stayed at nearby Wistow Hall before the fateful Battle of Naseby (June 4th, 1645) and that he and Prince Rupert took fresh horses from Wistow Hall following their defeat and fled to Leicester. It is entirely possible that they could have ridden past The Manor, knowing they had supporters here. Part of the old cobbled street was unearthed during building works and passed right by the medieval chapel and followed the bridleway towards Kibworth Beauchamp.
The door which you can see on the central range, is the original main doorway.The tall four-light window above (left) the door is not a second story window but was installed to allow natural light into the great hall below. The interior of the house is much altered, the only original feature is the huge fireplace in the kitchen (north cross-wing), which now contains a victorian range.