Home linked to P G Wodehouse's Blandings Castle up for sale
Apley Hall is up for sale for £1.75m
Apley Hall, overlooking the River Severn in Shropshire, was visited by the
creator of Jeeves and Wooster in his teenage years and was even rumoured to
be Hitler's intended home if Germany had defeated Britain in the Second
"For fans of Wodehouse wanting to imitate the life of an aristocrat, this
house would do very well indeed," said Colonel Norman Murphy, former
president the UK P G Wodehouse Society.
Despite its association with the antics of turn-of-the-century blue bloods,
the six-bedroomed property now has modern facilities including a cinema
room and a shared swimming pool.
Wodehouse, who died in 1975 aged 93, never revealed the identity of the
home of absent-minded Lord Emsworth, his siblings and a pig called the
Empress of Blandings. The search for the true Blandings Castle has
preoccupied the author's followers ever since.
In 1896, when Wodehouse was a teenager, his parents moved from Surrey to
Shropshire and lived a few miles away from Apley Hall, where they were
regular visitors. The author once wrote that his "happiest days as a boy
were spent near Bridgnorth."
Clues from the books include references to a boating lake, the River Severn
running nearby, a 45-minute drive to Shrewsbury at 1920s speeds and a view
of The Wrekin, the highest point in Shropshire.
In 2003, two geographers at University College London claimed computer
mapping technology pinpointed Apley Hall as the real Blandings Castle using
However, Col Murphy, who wrote a 1981 book 'In Search of Blandings',
believes the real inspiration was a fusion of two locations: the grounds of
nearby Weston Park, on the border of Shropshire and Staffordshire, and the
building at Sudeley Castle near Winchcombe, Gloucestershire.
Built in 1811, it was used as a prep school between 1962 and 1987 then lay
empty for so long that it became vandalised and was placed on the English
Heritage Buildings at Risk Register.
In 1997 it was bought and renovated and the main building was split into
five separate three-storey residences, of which the one for sale is by far
Its current owner, property company director Paul Stroud, 40, said many
Wodehouse fans had turned up at the gates asking for a look around the 10
acre communal grounds.
"It has been a real privilege to live there," he said. "I haven't read the
books but my PA is a big fan," he said.
P G Wodehouse