This is the story of a Derbyshire house and the family who have lived there for centuries. Home of Edith, Osbert and Sacheverell Sitwell, infested by ghosts as some houses are by rats, its owners have been colourful since it was built by, a Cavalier turned Roundhead – a Regency Buck who hunted a tiger with his hounds added the great rooms. The creator of today's Renishaw was eccentric Sir George, who laid out the beautiful gardens, bought
the Italian furniture and had Sargent paint his family, but was belittled in his son Osbert's biography. Osbert made it a magnet for writers like Evelyn Waugh and invited John Piper to immortalise it. Recent restoration has revealed the spell that caused Rex Whistler to call Renishaw 'the most exciting house in England'.
Desmond Seward was born in Paris and educated at Ampleforth and St Catharine's College, Cambridge. He is the author of many books including The Monks of War: The Military Religious Orders, The Hundred Years War, The Wars of the Roses, Eleanor of Aquitaine and Henry V as Warlord, Josephus, Masada and the Fall of Judaea (da Capo, US, April 2009), Wings over the Desert: in action with an RFC pilot in Palestine 1916-18 (Haynes Military, July 2009) and Old Puglia: A Portrait of South Eastern Italy (Haus August 2009). Forthcoming is The Last White Rose: the Spectre at the Tudor Court 1485-1547 (C...
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