Combermere Abbey - Historic Time-Line
1133 HUGH DE MALBANK Lord of Nantwich FOUNDS THE ABBEY
The Abbey is well-endowed at this time. Originally SAVIGNAC then CISTERCIAN. Dedicated to Virgin Mary and Saint Michael.
C.1250 FINANCIAL CRISIS
(Further crises follow.)
C.1450 LAVISH WEST RANGE BUILT AS ABBOT’S LODGINGS
1534 The GREAT ECCELESIASTICAL SURVEY. John Massy is Abbot of Combermere Abbey.
1536-39 DISSOLUTION OF THE MONASTERIES – Confiscation and Secularisation of Abbey lands.
1539 July 27. John Massy surrenders the Abbey to the King.
Combermere Abbey granted to SIR GEORGE COTTON (Comptroller to Duke of Richmond – bastard son of King Henry VIII).
1563 HOUSE REMODELLED for RICHARD COTTON (son of Sir George).
The Abbey is largely demolished.
The west range forms the nucleus of a new half-timbered Manor House.
1690 6 June. KING WILLIAM III stays at Combermere on his way to the BATTLE OF THE BOYNE.
1727 S & N BUCK make an ENGRAVING of the Abbey for SIR ROBERT SALUSBURY COTTON
1773 ROBERT STAPLETON COTTON born.
1774 DR SAMUEL JOHNSON visits and describes Combermere.
1775 SIR LYNCH COTTON dies and is succeeded by his son, SIR ROBERT SALUSBURY COTTON.
1791 STAPLETON COTTON, son of Sir ROBERT SALUSBURY COTTON, goes to Ireland to join the army as a Lieutenant.
1795-1797 HOUSE PARTLY REMODELLED for Sir ROBERT SALUSBURY COTTON
1797 BRANKELOW FOLLY (including Model dairy) is built by JOHN WEBB (1754-1828) on the opposite side of the Mere.
1799 Eldest son of Sir ROBERT SALUSBURY COTTON dies. SIR ROBERT STAPLETON COTTON becomes heir to the baronetcy.
1801-1807 SIR ROBERT STAPLETON COTTON moves between military postings – from Brighton to Ireland to Dorchester.
1808-1810 PENINSULAR WAR in which General SIR ROBERT STAPLETON COTTON serves with distinction under Wellington.
1814 17 May. SIR ROBERT STAPLETON COTTON is made a Baron.
18 June. SIR ROBERT STAPLETON COTTON marries his 2nd wife, Caroline. They honeymoon in Combermere before being posted to Paris.
1814-1821 GOTHICISATION of Combermere Abbey
Rendered GOTHIC FACADES.
BATTLEMENTS replace the gables.
The entrance is relocated, from west to east. Combermere is remodelled overall externally and partly internally in pointed Gothick.
Alterations are also made to the park.
WILLIAM TURNER is Surveyor.
JOHN WEBB is landscape architect.
1817-1820 Lord Combermere is posted to Barbados.
1820 December. DUKES of WELLINGTON and NEWCASTLE attend the christening of Lord Combermere’s 2ND son. Both Dukes are to be Godfathers to Wellington Henry.
DINING ROOM (recently demolished) added to north-east corner for Wellington’s visit and ARMOURY (demolished 1952) added to east front.
1821 Lord Combermere’s eldest son, Robert, by his first wife, dies. He travels in Europe and returns to the army.
1825 Lord Combermere leaves for BHURTPORE, INDIA.
Baron Robert made Viscount Combermere of Bhurtpore.
1829 LORD COMBERMERE (formerly Sir Robert Cotton)
commissions 2 REMODELLING SCHEMES:
by MORRISONS of Ireland and by EDWARD BLORE,
neither of which was carried out.
1829 MORRISONS’ stone Lodge entrance to the park is built.
1837 EDWARD BLORE’s design for the stable block is built.
1830 January. LORD COMBERMERE leaves India for England and returns to his estate in Combermere.
1838 Lord Combermere marries Miss Gibbings. They honeymoon in Combermere which becomes their base.
1852 Lord Combermere holds the post vacated by Wellington on his death of Office of Constable of the Tower.
1855 Viscount Combermere promoted to Field Marshall.
1865 Viscount Combermere dies 2nd Viscount inherits.
1891 3rd VISCOUNT inherits (and dissipates what remains of the family fortune).
1893 Estate put up for sale, but fails to sell.
1898-1917 Estate let to the DUCHESS OF WESTMINSTER.
1919 4th VISCOUNT (Francis) sells up to pay debts.
1919 SIR KENNETH CROSSLEY purchases the estate.
1939-1945 During WORLD WAR II the Abbey is used as a CONVALESCENT HOME, then a SCHOOL.
1952 10 June. Combernere Abbey is added to the STATUTORY LIST of buildings of special interest at Grade I, group value
1957 SIR KENNETH CROSSLEY dies.
The estate passes to his grand daughter PENELOPE CALLANDER (later LADY LINDSAY).
LADY LINDSAY commissions a scheme by RAYMOND ERITH and QUINLAIN TERRY (unbuilt).
1975 A H BROTHERTON & PARTNERS scheme put in hand.
SOUTH WING lowered by a storey to two storey wing.
WELLINGTON DINING ROOM demolished.
1992 Estate passes from Lady Lindsay to her daughter SARAH CALLANDER, now CALLANDER BECKETT.