There are no deeds for Hornton Grounds and we continually research and dig for facts about Hornton Grounds and its former inhabitants.
We are fairly sure Hornton Grounds was built in 1680 - 1690, the first record we have is Hicks Wells being born here in 1713.
The Enclosure map of 1766 clearly defines Hornton Grounds with wonderful field names such as Long Lither
Hicks Well ll was a wine merchant in Opporto - and we have magnificent wine cellars. He was a major benefactor to the village of Hornton and part of the Bloxham Hundred, many of his family are buried in the church in Hornton.
In the 1870's the Bacchus family were breeding and racing horses and farming, their son died in WW1
In the 1890's the Gaskell family arrived moving onto Compton Verney after 1910 when the house was then called Hornton House. The Gaskells had links to Byrne Jones the famous artist and even as tenants did some considerable structural developments with extensions to the house for staff and family.
The 1901 census shows John F Gaskell son of the High Sherrif of Oxford with 5 children and 13 staff living in the house from Governess to Groom.
The house and farm have had many tenants over the years.
In the 1920's and 30's Hornton Grounds hosted the local hunt balls.
During WW ll the house was commandeered and hosted officers of the Railway Construction Company - one leaving his signature in a cupboard
Nissan Huts were constructed on the lawns and the tennis court -
latterly used as calf huts instead of human accommodation !
The Passmores farmed here and were obviously very avante gard with farming groups traveling from Kent to see the systems. One Passmore who lectured at Reading University wrote a history of the plough.
Hornton Grounds has a very varied history of ownership latterly having been owned by Oxford Stone Co, British Steel, Tata and Corus. It had been tenanted until 21st Century when the Nunnely family were both owners and occupiers.
We were lucky enough to buy Hornton Grounds in 2009 and opened the bed and breakfast in 2010.
For more historical information on Hornton please visit:
Graham Vint grew up in Jersey on his father’s fruit farm with a small herd of Jerseys, after graduating from Seale Hayne in agriculture and completing a post graduate diploma in Farm Management he returned home to manage the family farm with his wife Catherine a fellow graduate of Seale Hayne. Together they developed the outstanding Tee Vee herd of pedigree Jersey cattle enjoying much success in the show ring and breaking a number of breed production records. After buying out his fathers business, they moved to larger premises near Southampton moving lock stock and barrel to farm on the edge of the New Forest and to be able to continue their passion of dairy farming and explaining about farming and food production to a wider audience. The Farm was opened to the public for over 60,000 visitors a year and specialised in exceptional quality educational visits for schools. The farm had a huge variety of different breeds of sheep, goats, poultry and pigs as well as their beloved pedigree Jersey cows.
The decision was made to leave farming in 2000 and follow new career paths. Graham became a member of the States of Jersey Police force winning the Chief Officers Cup in 2003.
After being made Farming Ambassador of the Year S.E. for the NFU in 2000 Catherine was appointed to the States of Jersey Government Agricultural Advisory Committee and served on Royal Jersey Agricultural and Horticultural Society Council. Catherine was also very actively involved in the establishment of the geographic marque – Genuine Jersey, developing it from a membership of a dozen businesses to nearly a hundred diverse businesses from food producers to craft workers to brewers all earning the right to use the logo of Genuine Jersey.
Catherine has ridden all her life and was an active Pony Clubber up to B test standard but for many years has regarded herself as a happy hacker whilst her passion for cattle took up all hers and Graham's time.
Graham and Catherine have a keen interest in all elements of the countryside; Graham is good shot and has a sharp eye for birds. Both enjoy every aspect of food whether producing it or consuming it and as a Cordon Bleu Cook Catherine enjoys cooking it. Graham and Catherine have also been strong supporters of the Slow Food Movement, having been active organisers of the Jersey Convivium.
One of our key aims in returning to farming in 2009 at Hornton Grounds was to enable a young person to establish themselves as a farmer in their own right. To enable the next generation of farming at Hornton Grounds we have evolved a share farming system leading to a tenancy of the land to fulfill our wish to retire at a sensible age and kickstart a future farmer.
MEET THE TEAM
Will Allan has been actively farming with his sisters since he was 15 and has built up a substantial flock of sheep. After Hartbury College he has developed a superb reputation within the sheep world. His tractor driving skills are always in strong demand. In his spare time Will is very active within Young Farmers and is an outstanding shot.
Will can be contacted by email:
OUR GREEN CREDENTIALS
Not only have we set up a farm which produces livestock following Pasture Fed principals which produce meat of the highest welfare with small carbon foot print and virtually no artificial fertilizer. Our house and glamping pod run with a very green thread in every regard. Our house and bed and breakfast is heated using wood pellets. Hot water is primarily produced with thermal power solar tubes and our lighting and electrical power is mostly produced from a 50kw solar voltaic power array. In the evenings our electricity comes from a Tesla Powerwall battery filled each day with sunshine powered electricity - providing the sun shines. However, even on cloudy days we generate some electricity.
La Retraite, our off grid glamping pod, is heated by infra red powered by solar power and a mini wood burner.