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Where do you think you live

You are in: London > Radio > Radio Events > Where do you think you live > House History

Castle House

Castle House in Epsom

House History

BBC London 94.9 listener Phil has had the history of his Epsom home studied. Find out more

This house close to Epsom Common has a fascinating history full of facades, stories and mysteries that make it intriguing as well as a fascinating insight into the local history of Epsom.

It is believed to date back to the 17th century, however there is no evidence of the current house dating back that far, and on John Rocque’s map of 1768 there is no house in this area.

The earliest record shows the house and gardens on the tithe map of 1843 owned and occupied by Charles Waite covering roughly over half an acre.

The house was then dramatically altered when two larger sections were added to each end of the house – this includes a gothic castle like tower on the northern end of the house, giving it the name of Castle House.

In 1883 Charles Waite mortgages the property to Leopold Joseph Green, and it is around this time that the large house was divided into five separate homes.

One of the stories behind this house is that it is believed to have been occupied by Monks, but sadly this appears to be a local myth, as there is no evidence that the house was ever occupied by monks and the grounds around the house were common land used by the villagers and not ecclesiastical land.

Although there were no monks there was a story of an old gentleman named Mr Whiffin who lived in Castle House who was famous for his eccentric habit of forcing everyone he met to kneel down to pray – right where they met.

Despite this, he was quite harmless and apparently went out of his way in helping others.

The castle house on the far end was at one time associated with the laundry industry in Epsom from the 19th century.

Washing was hung out around the common but because there was a fee due to the Lord of the Manor for using the common, many just hung out the washing on the bushes by the house. The laundries were in business till around the 1930s.

Melanie Backe-Hansen
Chesterton Historian

last updated: 22/06/07

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