Thousands of years of history have come before us in this part of the village.
Written history dates back to the will of Salburga, Lady of Brabourne, who lived in Brabourne Manor – somewhere near our current house – dying in 864 and leaving an ongoing legacy of provisions from her estate to the Augustine Monks in return for their prayers for her in her afterlife. Our 2022 Rosé is named after her.

Featuring in the Domesday book as one of 
the largest 20% of settlements recorded, Brabourne had 49 houses and was ruled over by local Lord Hugh de Montfort in 1086.

The church followed, built in the 12th Century and still features an original window – now the oldest in the UK – with glass that was sourced from Syria. This window inspired our logo.

“From Brabourne’s grapes, we are able to create wines that are wonderfully clean and pure… a natural expression of English wine.”

Salvatore Leone, winemaker

The oldest stained glass window in the U K, located in Brabourne Church and from which our logo is inspired

Local land changed hands between the lords for hundreds of years but, by 1710, our current house was built, and the farm was part of the Brabourne Estate (owned by the Knatchbulls, later combined with the Mountbattens). As magistrates moved from village to village, hearing local disputes, they used a local courtyard as their base – hence there is a Court Lodge in every village and the property name changed from Brabourne Manor to Court Lodge.

From the mid-19th Century until the early 20th Century, the Hammon family occupied Court Lodge Farm through several generations. Their farm records still survive, along with the earliest photos of the house and its occupants – you can see several above, with the house looking delightfully familiar.

After the turmoil of the two world wars, with the house occupied by armed forces, and an inter-war period as a poultry farm, a more settled period followed from 1945 with the arrival of ‘the ladies’.

Having met in St.Moritz before the war, Princess Cantacuzino was unable to return to her native Romania after the war, and Lady Charnwood and Carola Cochrane supported her and her children to establish a life in England.

These three redoubtable ladies moved into Court Lodge shortly after the war, using the very latest agricultural techniques to establish a market garden (run by Carola Cochrane), 
an apple orchard (the domain of Lady Charnwood) and a poultry farm (with the welly-clad Princess at the helm). Their wares were sold locally and beyond – Buckingham Palace is rumoured to have been a customer.

Lady Charnwood and Carola Cochrane

Our beautifully renovated tasting room

We also have our tasting room to thank the ladies for – a WW2 Nissen Hut retrieved by them to use a store after the war. Many locals remember all three ladies fondly and the Princess’s grandchildren still live in the village – not too far from the pub, which was a favoured lunchtime haunt for them all!

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