Local Area,

Where is Newton Surmaville?

31st of January 2023

Reading Time: 7 Minute(s)
Newton Surmaville from the walled garden
Newton Surmaville from the walled garden

Located in the heart of the British county of Somerset in the South West of England, Newton Surmaville is a 17th-century stately home and estate found just south of Yeovil in the civil parish of Barwick.

Having gained a reputation for being one of south Somerset’s most opulent historic manor houses and grand estates, this fully-equipped and beautifully restored home with its stretching parklands blends with its neighbouring scenic countryside perfectly. But Newton Surmaville is much more than this reputation, and to truly understand its stately premises, we must also appreciate what Newton Surmaville is, alongside its history, and the area by which it is encompassed.

In this article, we have addressed the most common questions of importance concerning Newton Surmaville, highlighting exactly where the home is located and the significant role it has played in shaping Somerset throughout its history.  

An Introduction to Newton Surmaville

Newton Surmaville is an estate with a stately home stretching over 15,000 square feet that is Grade-I listed, located in Somerset and south of Yeovil, the county’s fourth largest town. 

It is composed of the grounds of the estate, which stretch a whopping 62 acres, and the manor itself, Newton Surmaville House, which lies at the heart of the entire estate. The property neighbours the River Yeo, also known as the River Ivel, which is a tributary of the River Parrett which flows through Dorset and Somerset. 

Newton Surmaville is available to stay in as a holiday rental. Whether you’re looking to spend a short stay in the blissful Somerset countryside with family, friends or loved ones, or you’re looking to host an event like a wedding, birthday or anniversary party in an opulent venue, Newton Surmaville is the perfect destination for all occasions.

The History of Newton Surmaville

Newton Surmaville’s history stretches back as far as the year 1208, when the earliest dated document referring to ‘Newton’ was conceived. The estate was originally half of two hides, a hide being an old English way of measuring land which was sufficient to support a household, that had been recorded in the ‘Doomsday Book’; a manuscript dating back to the time of William the Conqueror, which details the records of a national consensus conducted across the majority of England.

Whilst Newton Surmaville was not mentioned individually here, it is thought that it must be contained as one of the two estates of the area, one of which was Yeovil at the time. The name ‘Surmaville’ was a family name of the Norman Lords who once owned the manor, which was confirmed during a post-mortem in 1221 of an ‘Emma de Waie’. She was established to have held land in the area of Newton of the King, and that her son, Philip de Surmaville, was the heir to this estate. 

At the end of the 13th century, the manor was divided between two Surmaville family members, with Joanna de Surmaville and William de Surmaville holding one half, and William de Gout in possession of the other. 

In the 14th century, the manor passed onwards to the Musket family, who owned the house and resided in it until 1385, when Alianora Musket died. Newton Surmaville then became the property of the Warmwell Family, and Roger Warmwell was incidentally one of the leaders of the riot in St John’s churchyard in the year 1349. The manor at this point, according to records, had a similar layout and features that it still possesses today. 

During the 15th century, after the death of their father John Warmwell who owned the manor, daughters Agnes and Alice Warmwell became the owners of the property. Upon Agnes’ death, the estate was inherited by her heir and son Henry Burnwell. 

By the 16th century, John Burnwell, the son of the aforementioned Henry Burnwell, lived in the estate with his wife Dorothy for some time before this later became the property of his heir Thomas. Thomas’ son Joseph, had purchased part of a local manor of Kingston found in Yeovil in 1587, but this became his downfall after accumulating a large amount of debt, resulting in him having to sell Newton Surmaville to Robert Harbin. 

Robert Harbin, who was a wealthy wool merchant in Yeovil, began reconstruction of the derelict Newton Surmaville in the early 1600s. Newton Surmaville House and its estate remained within the Harbin bloodline onwards from this era. Within the late 1800s, the property had extensive renovations, but still preserved some of the most historic features that make the manor so unique. 

Library at Newton Surmaville

The death of Harbin’s descendant Sophie Wyndham Rawlins in 2006 marked the next phase of the estate’s life. In 2007, the property was purchased by Robert and Jane Cannon, alongside a 60-acre additional space encompassing the house and across the River Yeo. The property now is a thriving estate with long-standing historical significance in the area of Somerset and Southern England. 

What is There At Newton Surmaville?

Within the estate itself, you’ll find the property’s luscious gardens and parklands, which are Grade II listed. These were originally established in the 14th century according to records, but were redesigned in the 19th century by Robert Harbin. The grounds also contain orchard areas and a fishing lake, which is fed by the ground’s neighbouring mediaeval carp pond and spring. 

Bridge over River Yeo at Newton Surmaville

The house’s garden area additionally features a rose garden, a walled kitchen garden, and a Summer House that was built in the 1700s. The estate originally had other outbuildings and gardens within its grounds, and as of 2007, had its own on-site cottages, a boathouse, barn, stables, and ice house. 

What is Near Newton Surmaville?

Newton Surmaville house and its grounds are surrounded by beautiful Somerset countryside, but the estate also neighbours some of the county’s well-known, and lesser-discovered, settlements. If you’re visiting Newton Surmaville, you can discover some of these lovely towns, villages, and hamlets within an easy drive or walking distance away. 

Yeovil 

The 4th largest town in Somerset, Yeovil is located just northwest of Newton Surmaville. The property is only a 5-minute drive from Yeovil via Newton Road or a mere 23-minute walk via the same route. The town’s name translates to ‘town on the river’,  given its proximity to the River Yeo.

The town has a population of nearly 46,000 people and was mentioned in the ‘Doomsday Book’ as a market community that was thriving. The town is thought to have been given its name as far back as the 800s in the Saxon period, and it held a prime position along a major Roman road route across the West Country back in ancient times. 

It is encompassed by the same beautiful countryside as Newton Surmaville and is home to numerous shop-lined promenades and streets, as well as South Somerset’s premier theatre facility – the Octagon Theatre, a country park, and much more. 

Barwick 

Barwick, thought to be derived from the Saxon name ‘Stow-Ford’, is a small village and civil parish. It is the area in which Newton Surmaville is located and is situated roughly 2 miles south of Yeovil town, and 1.2 miles from Newton Surmaville along Newton Road, which is only a short 3-minute drive or a leisurely 25-minute walk. 

Very small in size, the parish also encompasses the neighbouring village of Stoford and has a population of just over 1,200 people in total. The village can be traced back to the Saxon era, with its earliest mention being in 1185. Barwick is both charming and nothing short of a quintessential Somerset settlement.

Bradford Abbas 

Bradford Abbas, a village and civil parish, is actually located in the county of Dorset as opposed to Somerset. It lies only 3 miles southeast of Yeovil, and is only a brief 7-minute drive from Newton Surmaville, via Clifton Road and Newton Road. Its parish includes the settlement of Saxon Maybank, located to its north, and is particularly small, with only a population of just under 1000 residents. 

The village is filled with a few quaint country village stores, a typical English country pub named the Rose and Crown, and is home to St Mary Church, a pleasant and historic building dating back to the 15th century.

Clifton Maybank

The civil parish and hamlet of Clifton Maybank is also located in the county of Dorset. It is situated only a short mile from Bradford Abbas to its Southwest, 3 miles to the Southeast of Yeovil, and only 2 miles from Newton Surmaville, a steady 4-minute drive or a 40-minute walk away from the property. 

The hamlet is best known for its country house, Clifton Maybank House, a grand grade-I listed home which features a surviving Tudor-era fabric. The parish itself is only home to around 40 residents, according to a Dorset County Council estimation made in 2013.

Summary 

Newton Surmaville has been a long-standing pillar in the Somerset county, and South Somerset community, for centuries. It’s without a doubt that its fascinating history and sheer grandeur are enough to intrigue anyone who learns of, or visits, this stately manor home and its grounds. 

Newton Surmaville from the hill

Equally, Newton Surmaville offers a prime location to explore the surrounding beauty and rolling vistas of Somerset county. With neighbouring quintessential English villages and hamlets, as well as some of Somerset’s most thriving town communities, Newton Surmaville house offers a marvellous destination to learn more of the deep-rooted history and loveable settlements beyond its own walls. 

Should you be interested in learning more about Newton Surmaville and its surrounding areas, you can stay in this magnificent property for yourself to experience its grandeur in person, and explore the blissful Somerset countryside in which it is set during your stay.

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