About the Grange
The Grange has an interesting history. Our records go back to around 1800 but we know that there was a house here well before that. Once owned by Lord Kenyon, by the mid-1800s it was owned and lived in by the Provis family. William Provis was Chief Engineer to Thomas Telford and they were apparently great friends (Provis moved into Telford’s London house when he died). The Grange was Provis’s country residence, where he liked to spend time fossil-hunting. Whether Telford visited or not is difficult to say but they worked together on many large-scale canal, river and road projects, including the building of the London to Holyhead Road and Menai Bridge. At that time the Grange was part of a 100-acre estate with a lake, stables, farm buildings and dairy. Today, there are ten acres (with a walled vegetable garden and wildflower meadow). Parts of the Grange were remodelled in the 1930s by the Needham family, who owned the house until the 1970s. Since then, the Grange has been owned by members of Rose’s family, and since 2000 by Rose and Jon.
The Grange Stable Cottage, as you might have guessed, was formerly part of the rather smart stables for the main house, consisting of stables, hay loft and coach house. They were developed in the 1970s and 80s to serve as overflow accommodation for the Grange and have since been refurbished extensively to provide comfortable and spacious spaces for self-catering.
The Grange Stables in 1933.
We (Jon and Rose Ward-Allen) moved up to Shropshire from London in 1994, bringing with us our newly formed publishing company, the Medlar Press. At that time Rose’s parents owned the Grange, running it as a retreat centre. In 2000, accompanied now by two small children, we moved into the house and whilst initially continuing to run retreat weekends, introduced new courses in the arts of bookbinding, letterpress printing and paper marbling, developing a well equipped print room and bindery in old buildings in the garden. The Grange is a very special place - a large country house with extensive grounds and it’s a house that we’ve both known and loved for a long time (Rose’s memories of it date to the late 70s when her aunt and uncle developed it from a private house into a popular country house hotel).