farmhouseBlackham Court


Blackham Court

Sue Rowland lives at Blackham Court, where she runs S J Rowland Associates, Private, Chartered Physiotherapists, Homeopaths and Acupuncturists, and the Priory Park Business Centre. She also farms, rides and looks after the house and estate for future generations.





Blackham Court, in Withyham, East Sussex, is a 14th Century farmhouse and is believed to have been built on the site of a former Priory.  The history of the land can be traced back to the 11th Century, when Robert Count of Mortain (half brother of King William I) gave the land to the Priory of Mortain.

prioryparkPriory Park

Property in England held by foreign religious houses was usually seized by the crown when hostilities broke out in France.  Edward I did this in 1285, Edward II in 1324 and Edward III in 1337.  The estates were restored in 1361 when hostilities concluded.

In 1372 it was a subsidiary religious home of the Benedictine Abbey of St. Martin de Meremest at Tours.

Withyham was given by Henry IV (1399-1413) to the Prior and Convent of the Holy Trinity at Hastings - the manor was at the time valued at £25.5s.5d.  The grant was confirmed in 1413 by Henry V.  There is no further mention of Withyham being connected with a foreign religious house for in 1414 all alien priorities were finally dissolved by Act of Parliament.

There are remains of fish ponds adjacent to the current house, which may have been introduced by a local Bailiff (almost certainly a monk) to enliven his diet.

In 1902 local historian Rev Sutton refers to a survey carried out in the reign of Elizabeth I (1558-1603) which states that the Manor of Withyham belonged to Lord Buckhurst, and that included Blackham and all the land in Sussex to the county boundary with Kent to Holtye Common in the west.

Sutton also tells us that the tenants of Blackham Court from 1714 included:

The farm remained in the Buckhurst Estate until 1910.

The medieval moated site was scheduled as a Grade II Ancient Monument in 1953.

The adjoining barn, farm buildings and oast have recently been converted for commercial use.

Priory Park at Blackham Court offers superb modern office accommodation within the lovingly restored historical buildings.