Thursday, 3 January 2013

Mongewell Park



Mongewell Park or the former Carmel College as it became known for a while. Mongewell is mentioned in the Domesday book and has a church that dates back to the 12th century. Mongewell Park was formally the home the Bishop of Llandaf before  the hose was replaced with a mansion in 1890 for Alexander Frazer who's initials can be seen on the lodge house. Frazer died in 1916 and the place was used for a hospital for wounded officers in World War One, it was then sold to American millionaire Howard Gould. As he was an atheist he had the lane that went to the church sunk so he did not see the parishioners going to the parish church in the grounds. The place was sold in 1939 and used by the RAF till it was sold to become Carmel College a Jewish Boarding school till it closed in 1997 it now awaits redevelopment.

 The mansion at Mongwell Park, this area in front I have no doubt would have been a entrance drive at one time.

 The back of the house looking across the lawns, the area of the house to the right I feel is an extension.




Looking across the lawn to the ornamental pond. Past that you can see one of the additional Carmel College buildings.









The Tennis courts which could have been added by Frazer.


                                     
The old boathouse with the boat drying racks in the foreground.

       

Walking back from the boathouse past the manor house you come across this area which at fist I thought was a compost heap


But inside the trees you find the founder of Carmel College's Grave.










Which I felt looked very sad and neglected considering what he had done, seemed even worse that the place had ceased to be what he had created.




 



The school classrooms across the ornamental lake.











Look through the window and it looks like the kids went home on Friday and never came back.









The science classrooms still had equipment in them.











A swimming pool which I might add I have used when I used to be in Benson Divers.










No water in it now though.























The place had it's own synagogue .




Nearby is an amphitheater which no longer saw any plays done in the place



Sir Keith Joseph opened the new computer laboratory.







  


Which at the time probably looked quite modern but now looks old and shabby.






 But other buildings looked like they did not age even if a bit odd.

 
The college sits in some beautiful gardens with lakes which I can only hope are retained when they start building housing here though I don't think the college buildings will be missed. I intend to go back and record the place once more before any work starts but you can see my photo's from round the place here 

 You can also see photos from
 St Johns The Baptist church which are in the grounds and are worth a visit.


2 comments:

  1. That's a really interesting story! Enjoyed the pics. :)

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  2. Hi Bill - We are putting together a publication about the sculptress Naomi Blake and have been searching for a while to find out who owns the old Carmel College regarding a picture of the sculpture they have of hers. However we have to date found no information and so began searching for Mongewell Park in general - coming across your blog. I noticed that you have a photograph of the sculpture in question (called Abraham and Isaac) in the foreground of your photo of the synagogue and wondered if you may let us use it in the book? Please contact me on anyameyerowitz@hotmail.co.uk if you are interested so I can speak to you further about this.

    Happy new year!

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