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Bramall Hall

Bramall Hall, one of Cheshire's grandest black and white timber-framed manor houses is situated at Bramhall, Stockport. The timber-framed building dates back to the fourteenth century, with later additions from the sixteenth and nineteenth centuries.

The manor of Bramall has a long history and dates back to Anglo-Saxon times, when it was held as two separate estates owned by the Anglo-Saxon freemen Brun and Hacun. At the Norman conquest King William I granted the Bramall estate to his follower Hamon de Masci. The manor of Bramall was mentioned in the Domesday Book in 1086, where it is referred to as Bramale and was held by the Masseys. From the late fourteenth century it was owned by the Davenport family who built the present house, and remained lords of the manor for about 500 years before selling the estate of nearly 2,000 acres in 1877. The Davenports were a family of significant landowners in the north-west of England whose antecedents can be traced back to the time of the Norman conquest.

The name "Bramall" means "nook of land where broom grows" and is derived from the Old English noun brom meaning broom, a type of shrub common in the area, and the Old English noun halh, which has several meanings - including nook, secret place and valley.

The Great Hall is the central part of Bramall Hall and dates from around the end of the fourteenth century. As with typical great halls in the Middle Ages, this would have been the room where the business of the house, estate and its villagers was conducted as well as a communal eating room for the household. It was originally an open-roofed, single-storey building, with a fireplace situated in the middle of the floor. It was rebuilt around the end of the sixteenth century and is mentioned by the novelist William Harrison Ainsworth in his 1834 novel 'Rookwood'.

The Lesser Hall which leads off the southern end of the Great Hall, has panelled oak walls, and the timbers that the ceiling is constructed of are decorated with cross and rose shapes dating from the Victorian era. The Banqueting Hall, which leads off the Lesser Hall, is believed to be the oldest part of the house.

The impressive Ballroom, also known as the Upper Banqueting Hall, has an arched roof and possibly dates from the sixteenth century. It contains magnificant sixteenth century wall murals, including one which may depict the nursery rhyme "Ride a cock horse". The large Withdrawing Room, situated above the Great Hall, has an elaborate plaster ceiling, and the overmantel above the fireplace bears the arms of Queen Elizabeth I. The frieze of the Withdrawing Room incorporates shields of arms representing marriages of the Davenport family.

The house is set in 70 acres (28 ha) of parkland, designed in the style of Capability Brown to give grand vistas over the terraces, lawns and lakes to the trees beyond. The Hall has a dedicated professional team to ensure your visit is as enjoyable as possible.

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