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Ashtead Park
Upper Pond, Ashtead Park - geograph.org.uk - 62946.jpg
Upper Pond
Type Local Nature Reserve
Location Ashtead, Surrey
OS grid TQ 192 585
Area 24.2 hectares (60 acres)
Managed by Surrey Wildlife Trust

Ashtead Park is a 24.2-hectare (60-acre) Local Nature Reserve in Ashtead in Surrey. It is owned by Mole Valley District Council and managed by the Surrey Wildlife Trust. It contains several important listed buildings. The Park itself has remains of a Roman building, four lakes/ponds and the school's playing fields and is Grade II listed on the Register of Historic Parks and Gardens.

History

Ashtead Park House

Ashtead Park House - geograph.org.uk - 430368
Ashtead Park House
Ashtead Park showing City of London Freemen's School
Ashtead Park showing a view of the school

Henry Howard, 7th Duke of Norfolk sold Ashtead Manor to Sir Robert Howard (son of Thomas Howard, 1st Earl of Berkshire) in 1680. The house remained in the Howard family until it passed, through marriage, to Richard Bagot in 1783. Richard Bagot commissioned the leading architect Sir Thomas Wyatt to develop its grand fa├žade from designs by Joseph Bonomi. Bagot then changed his name to Howard and the house remained in the Howard / Bagot family for nearly a century. The house was bought by Sir Thomas Lucas, 1st Baronet in 1880 and enlarged and altered at major expense. Lucas sold it to Pantia Ralli in 1889. Following Ralli's death the house was acquired by the City of London Corporation in 1924 and since then has been occupied by the City of London Freemen's School. The house is listed as Grade II*.

Ashstead House

Ashtead House is a large red brick house with a nucleus dating back to the 17th century or earlier with 18th century and late 19th century additions.

Headmasters House

Headmasters House is an architecturally imposing red brick development which also forms part of the school campus.

Ecology

The nature reserve was formerly part of the park of Ashtead House. It is mainly woodland on heavy London Clay and it has two ponds. Fauna include the broad-bodied chaser and emperor dragonfly and the common blue damselfly.

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