Wix Abbey, a beautiful and historically important manor in Wix, Manningtree
Wix Abbey is a striking Grade II listed Elizabethan home set in three acres of beautifully landscaped gardens, including hard tennis courts and garaging. As well as over 5,000 sq ft of attractive living space, the house features two enormous attic rooms and a cellar for extra storage.
However, this house doesn’t just come with plenty of space, it is also associated with the title ‘Lord and Lady of the Manor’, which can be bought by separate negotiation. Perhaps most impressive is the fact that the title of Lord of the Manor of Wix Abbey predates the house, having been previously held by Cardinal Wolsey (1525) and then King Henry VIII.
Current owner, Raymond Linch tells us more: “The Lord and Ladyship of Wix Abbey dates back to the Reformation when Cardinal Wolsey created the title and then subsequently granted it to King Henry VIII. We purchased the title from the previous owner but I believe it’s important for it to remain with the house, so hopefully the new buyer will be interested in acquiring it as the custodian of this important historical dwelling. The book ‘A History of Wix Priory’ was written specifically about the house, from when it was an Abbey dating back to 12th century up to the present day.”
So, was it the title that attracted Raymond Linch to Wix Abbey when he chose to buy it a few years back? Raymond suggests not: “I fell in love with Wix Abbey the first time I saw it. I love its majestic appearance (the brickwork was sampled from Hampton Court) and yet it is a very easy house to live in. It’s a beautifully proportioned and imposing Elizabethan Manor house, laced with historical and architectural importance. Yet, once inside, it has all the modern convenience of a large contemporary house. We’ve found it to be a very warm and friendly home with lovely log fires that are a real joy in the winter. The kitchen AGA also radiates warmth and the kitchen is a lovely congregating space.”
As well as a striking house with a homely feel, Wix Abbey benefits from beautiful gardens and attractive surroundings. Raymond continues: “The house sits well within the extensive gardens and the peace and quiet is a very important factor. We always wanted to include a Tudor Long Pond to the front of the house and, in a couple of years, once the newly planted hornbeam trees aligning both sides of the pond are pleached, it will be quite spectacular. Our gardener, John, was brought up in Hampton Court as his father was head gardener there. John has an immense knowledge of Tudor gardens and this shows with some of his wonderful creations at Wix Abbey, such as the parterre, the Tudor herb and vegetable garden and the many trees which have been planted.”
Wix and its surrounding areas were also an appealing factor for Raymond and his wife: “We came from Halstead and were not really aware of where Wix was; neither were we familiar with the Tendring peninsula, which is a really beautiful, un-spoiled and unknown gem. Wix is a quiet and friendly village surrounded by breath-taking countryside. There are plenty of nearby attractions ranging from country and marine-based activities, as well as many fine restaurants. Manningtree Station is also very convenient, being only ten minutes away, which helped with my frequent travel to London.”
When asked what Raymond will miss most about Wix Abbey, he finds it hard to decide: “I will miss everything from the comfortable nature of the house to its views and vistas; and the happy memories. Wix Abbey isn’t simply a home, it is a meaningful part of history and, as its custodian, one feels immensely proud.”