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Charlton, Kent, designs for a house for John Jones Esq, c1762, unexecuted (5)


The manor house of Charlton, Greenwich was built in 1612 for Sir Adam Newton, tutor to Henry, Prince of Wales, the eldest son of James I. It remains to this day a fine example of Jacobean architecture.

This Adam scheme for Charlton is for a small site approximately 58ft by 39ft. The design is for a plain brick, five-bay house on a sloping site, with two-and-a-half storeys in the principal façade and three storeys to the rear. King suggests the scheme was intended for a site to the north-east of the manor house where a smaller house was constructed in c1762, close to the road now known as Cox Mount.

The client, John Jones Esq. of Ireland and Twickenham was the second husband of Margaretta / Margaret Maria Weller, whom he married in 1761. Margaret had inherited the estates and manor house of Charlton from her uncle, John Maryon. Mayron, rector of White Roding, Essex died in November 1760 without surviving issue and left the manor to Margaret, the daughter of his sister Mary and her husband William Peers. On her death, on 19 June 1777 at the age of 64, a monumental inscription was dedicated to Margaretta Maria Jones, set up in St Luke’s Church, Woolwich by her only child Jane Wilson.

Although the Adam drawings for Charlton are undated, King suggests a date of 1762, a year after John Jones’s marriage to Margaret. It also predates the 1766 Act of Parliament issued to the couple to enable them to establish a long lease of the estate to the Perceval family.

The house constructed in the 1760s to the north east of the manor was demolished in the nineteenth century. As a result we cannot know if Adam’s scheme was carried out.

D. Lysons, ‘Charlton’, The environs of London: Volume 4, Counties of Herts, Essex and Kent, 1796, pp. 324-342; A.T. Bolton, The architecture of Robert and James Adam, 1922, Volume II, Index pp. 6, 77; D. King, The complete works of Robert and James Adam & Unbuilt Adam, 2001, Volume II, pp. 80, 124; ‘History of House and Gardens’, www.greenwichheritage.org; ‘Charlton near Woolwich: Monumental inscriptions of St Luke’s Church near Woolwich’, www.kentarchaeology.org.uk/research/monumental-inscriptions/charlton-near-blackheath (accessed February 2021)

Anna McAlaney, 2021



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Contents of Charlton, Kent, designs for a house for John Jones Esq, c1762, unexecuted (5)