Express & Star

Spare £40,000 - why not rent a mansion?

A Georgian mansion that has played host to political leaders, captains of industry and countless weddings has gone on the market to let – for anybody with a spare £40,000 a year.


Davenport House, near Bridgnorth, is available for rent after Roger and Jane Murphy, who have been running it as an hotel and conference centre for the last 22 years, decided to retire.

The 11-bedroom property, set in its own private parkland close to the centre of Worfield, dates back to 1726.

The mansion's grounds were used by the US Army during the Second World War
Jane and Roger Murphy, who are ready to retire, in the mansion's saloon
A grand staircase for a grand home

Susie King, of Balfours Property, said the house would be suitable for either commercial or residential use.

"Many people will know Davenport House as a fabulous venue hosting weddings and other private functions," she said.

"Sadly, the present incumbents are retiring and the property is available to let on a long-term lease."

As well as 11 bedrooms, the property also has six reception rooms, stables and grazing land.

Henry Davenport, who made his fortune in India, was the first owner of the house, having commissioned renowned architect Francis Smith of Warwick to design and build the property.

Six reception rooms will provide entertainment for friends
Philip Dunn, now MP for Ludlow, with former Conservative leader William Hague at Davenport House

Smith's other works include Mawley Hall, near Cleobory Mortimer, Ombersley Hall near Kidderminster, and Kinlet Hall, also near Bridgnorth.

The house remained home to the Davenport family until 1993, when it was leased to Mr and Mrs Murphy.

During the Second World War, in the days running up to D-Day, the grounds were turned over to the US Army and covered with Nissen huts and tents as it became home to around 1,500 GIs.

When the Murphy family took over the property, they carried out a restoration, turning it back to its pre-war condition.

Mr Murphy said: "We have loved living in this house – it offers the opportunity for the most magnificent and memorable occasions – and that is why Jane and I came here."

High-profile functions included a visit by former Conservative Party leader William Hague in the run-up to the 2005 General Election.

The couple have also catered for the Queen on two occasions, as well as Prince Charles, Princess Anne and Bill and Hillary Clinton.

The Murphys will leave in September.

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