Hinchingbrooke House Virtual Tour



The House

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Learning Materials

Learning Materials

The Conversion of Hinchingbrooke Nunnery.

The conversion of Hinchingbrooke from a nunnery to a country house took place over a period of about 60 years.
Here is a list of the main owners, the changes they made and the approximate dates.

Richard Cromwell. (1538-45).

  • He began his work in 1538. He died in 1545.
  • He used locally made red bricks to fill in many medieval doors and church windows.
  • He converted the church and divided it into two floors. A long gallery was built on the upper floor.
  • The stone fire place has his initials RC carved in it as well as Tudor roses.
  • He kept many of the existing walls. These were plastered over and only revealed in recent times.
  • He also converted the prioresses' lodgings. in the south west corner of the building.

Henry Cromwell. (1545-1602).

  • He built the new kitchen range or service wing. Look at the brickwork for the diaper pattern which is typical of Tudor brickwork. Can you find it anywhere else around the house?
  • He rebuilt the north side of the house with the great hall. He added a new wooden porch to make the entrance more impressive. He moved the gate house and two bay windows to Hinchingbrooke from Ramsey Abbey. These also helped to show off his wealth.

Sir Oliver Cromwell. (1602-1627).

  • He built the great bow window on the east side of the house. This was later moved to the south side of the house after a fire in 1830.
  • He improved the interior. 

You can mark the locations of these changes on the plan your teacher will give you.


Other Historical Links -

Oliver Cromwell

Hinchingbrooke's Local History Pages -

Samuel Pepys

Civil War

Brief History of the House

The House through the ages

Hinchingbrooke School Homepage