My grandfather made his entry into Ramsdell Hall history just before the death of Thomas Chaddock-Lowndes. He was courting Ione and although he was well-received as a guest, he was not seen as a future son-in-law. His stories to me of skating at Rode Heath, nights-out at Hanley Music Hall, and generally loving life at the Hall, filled me with wonder.
He went into the Airforce during WW1 but came back to Ramsdell after the war to marry his Queenie, as he called my grandmother Ione.My mother Ina and Uncle Alastair thus came into the world.And eventually me!
Iris and Roddie were married on the same day in 1925, by which time Ramsdell Hall was passing out of the family's hands. Tommie had done his best but the combination of death duties and dwindling fortunes meant that after 160 years, the Hall was no longer owned by the Lowndes.
Sir Richard Bailey's Family took up the Hall during the 1920s. Whether it was Sir Richard, once chairman of Royal Doulton, or his father,Phillip who lived there, I'm not sure.
Stanley Harrison then bought the Hall and kept it for some decades until the 1960s when he sold it to Elizabeth Poole. She,within a few years,sold it to the current owners who have lived there since 1968. Roger Moore had been one of the prospective buyers!
During the 2nd World War,Ramsdell was used for evacuees. It would be interesting to hear their stories.
I will never forget that memorable afternoon in September 1970 when the lady of the house opened the door to me and treated me with such hospitality.To have walked the corridors of my ancestors was something very special.The cellars in particular, were very impressive. I was even driven back to Kidsgrove Station afterwards.
Thirty-two years later, my wife Rosaline and I, accompanied by my sister Jane and her partner Lorne, were treated equally hospitably by her husband. He, as a young boy had delivered newspapers to the Hall. If ever a house found the right owners, then Ramsdell Hall did and still does.
A wonderful old house, lovingly restored and maintained by two people who have truly found spirit of place here. The Eighteenth Century builders of the Hall must be delighted with what they see.
Ramsdell Hall is alive and very well. :)