The English Country House

By James Peill

Foreword by Julian Fellowes

Photographs by James Fennell

224 pages

9¼ x 12¼ in. , portrait

Hardcover with jacket

ISBN 978-0-86565-306-1

US $55 / CAN $62

"The 10 houses selected for James Peill’s new book, The English Country House, are all examples of houses still owned and occupied by the descendants of those who built them. . . . Each house has been beautifully photographed by James Fennell. . . . This book . . . has a strong sense of the aesthetic enjoyment of moving through these houses with a curious but well-informed eye, enjoying the contrasting moods and stories of different rooms."

Jeremy Musson, Country Life

"Whatever virtues one assigns to the English country house (. . . a daunting coffee table book just out from the Vendome Press), coziness is not one of them. . . . And yet the drafty beauty of the estates is such that it would clearly be worth enduring centuries upon centuries of emotional remoteness just to hang on to all that pomp and silver and canopied beds and coffered ceilings and graceful balustrades nestled in the sheepy hills."

Town & Country

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"I am sure that this book will give great pleasure to any who open its covers." —Julian Fellowes, from the Foreword

Stately, grand, and a testament to the generations who have cared for them, the 10 English country houses featured in this volume are architecturally distinctive and filled with evocative family memorabilia, from commissioned portraits to monogrammed heirloom dinner services to the bells that once summoned the downstairs staff. Like the fictional Downton Abbey, these real homes are still in the hands of descendants of the original owners.

From Kentchurch Court, which has been the seat of the Scudamore family for nearly 1,000 years, to a delightful Gothic house in rural Cornwall to a charming ducal palace to Goodwood House, England’s greatest sporting estate, this beautifully illustrated book showcases a wealth of gardens, interiors, and fine art collections. James Peill, coauthor of Vendome’s The Irish Country House, recounts the ups and downs of the deep-rooted clans who constructed these homes and illuminates the history and legends behind these marvelous estates, many of which have never before been published. Julian Fellowes, creator of Downton Abbey, contributes a foreword.

"All the ten houses featured remain in the hands of descendants of the original owners. Their glories and eccentricities are brought to life with sensitive photographs lit by natural light by James Fennell. The layout of the book is beautifully paced and the double-page photographs are glorious. . . . Brimming with characters, fine architecture, portraits, parkland and chapels, this book is a must for anyone interested in the English country house."
—Amicia de Mowbray, Historic House

"There's something mysterious about a stately home in the English countryside. . . . Peill takes a closer look at 10 such homes. . . . As if the beautiful photographs of the interiors and vistas weren't enough, Peill's text also looks at the histories and legacies of the families who occupied these estates."
—MarthaStewart.com

"A scrumptious book. . . this book's photos reveal some hidden treasures of the English countryside."
Seattle Times

"The book celebrates the enduring legacy of the English country house and the families who for centuries have been guardians of their fate. For the aficionado of architecture, interiors, history or way of life, this is a keeper for your collection."
Quintessence blog

"You are going to love The English Country House. . . . Diverse architectural styles, idyllic settings, fascinating stories. . . the romance of the English country house is alive and well in these homes."
From the Right Bank blog

"Engaging and gorgeous, this book is a must have for those who have an appreciation for old houses, architecture, history or design."
Mix and Chic blog

James Peill is the curator of Goodwood House and a former vice president of Christie’s.

Julian Fellowes is an actor, novelist, film director, and screenwriter, best known as the creator of Downton Abbey.

James Fennell is the photographer of The Irish Country House and The Scottish Country House.