Arbury Hall was originally built on the site of a 12th century Augustinian Priory. The Elizabethan house was remodelled in Gothic style for Sir Roger Newdigate during the second half of the 18th century. The exterior of the old hall was entirely encased in stone. The fine gardens also date from the 18th Century.
The Newdigate family has owned the house and estate since 1586.
The author George Eliot was born on the estate, and a fictionalized version of the house and estate appears in her work.
The house is a splendid example of Gothic Revival style, a style which later influenced much of Victorian architecture. The ceilings in the principal rooms are fan vaulted in plaster in a manner apparently inspired by Westminster Abbey. In the principal sitting-room the ceiling is more ornate and more high-relief than one could believe possible if one had not seen it with one’s own eyes. Above the present entrance front is a long gallery with many curios on display, including a collection of antique firearms and native weapons.
Views of the house interiors can be found on the estate website.
The house and gardens are infrequently open to the public (Bank Holiday Sunday/Mondays only in 2013).
The entrance to the house is via a gateway in Stockingford village (B4012/B4112). A very long driveway follows; beware the ill-marked speed bumps!
Admission to the house is by guided tour only. The Spring Bank Holiday opening proved popular, and visitors had to queue for half an hour or more for a tour. (Other establishments would have issued timed tickets). The gardens, which (in spring) feature many flowering trees, are well worth seeing. There are several lakes.