Enjoy a virtual tour of Oldway Mansion, Paignton’s famous historical mansion, sadly it has seen better days and the mansion itself is closed to the public. The gardens are still maintained though and are nice to wander around.
Update: Nov 21 2020
- Added more images to the tour
It’s such a shame that this place has been allowed to fall into disrepair and be closed to the public, it could be a big tourist attraction. I remember when Oldway was the place to be, it held many events and weddings, the marble staircase, ceiling and murals are stunning. I just hope one day it can be restored back to its former glory. There are volunteer gardeners doing their best to up keep the gardens, but it is a big task.
Oldway Mansion is a large house and gardens in Paignton, Devon, UK. 1871 the Fernham estate in Paignton was purchased by Isaac Merritt Singer founder of the Singer Sewing Machine Company. Oldway Mansion was built as a private residence for Isaac Merritt Singer. Sadly, poor old Isaac died in 1875 aged 64 just before it was finished. Such a pity really as it could have been a happy home for the ever unfaithful Isaac and his 24 children, wives and mistresses. It was rebuilt by his third son Paris Singer in the style of the Palace of Versailles.
- Oldway Mansion is set in 17 acres (69,000 m2) of gardens, which are laid out on an Italian theme by the French landscape gardener Achille Duchesne.
- King George V visited the mansion in 1915.
- The formal gardens and parkland are Grade II listed on the Register of Historic Parks and Gardens.
- Oldway Mansion has been a Grade II listed building since 1993.
- Paignton Urban District Council purchased Oldway Mansion from the Singer family in 1946 for £46,000.
- The Rotunda was built in 1873, and was used originally as a horse riding pavilion and exercise area. Isaac Merritt Singer gave this building the nickname of “The Wigwam”.
- Oldway has 115 rooms, a ballroom, grand staircase and a gallery that is a miniature reproduction of the hall of mirrors at Versaille.
- During the spring of 2004, it doubled as Buckingham Palace for the filming of Churchill: The Hollywood Years, starring Christian Slater and Neve Campbell. Pink gravel, guard houses and period vehicles were used to recreate the royal courtyard.
- On 21 December 2005, the ballroom at Oldway Mansion was the location for Devon’s first civil partnership. The registration was officially witnessed by the Mayor of Torbay and his dignitaries.
During the period of the First World War from 1914 to 1918, Oldway Mansion was transformed into the American Women’s War Relief Hospital. The Rotunda was converted to house rows of beds for the wounded soldiers being brought back to England from the trenches of France and Belgium. King George V visited the mansion in 1915.
- Torbay Golf & Country Club opened in 1933. Oldway Mansion was used as the clubhouse, with the course in the hills above the Mansion. The course closed in the mid 1950s.
- During the Second World War from 1939 to 1945, Oldway was used in the war effort by housing RAF cadets training to be aircrew. In 1943 Oldway was damaged in an air raid, along with many other buildings in Paignton.
Torquay Rd, Paignton, Torbay TQ3 2TY. Driving is th easiest way as there’s a large free car park.
- Car, There is a large free car park right outside the mansion.
- Bus, 12 or Gold stop at the Oldway Mansion bus stop on the main road to Torquay.
- Bowling green.
- Dog walking
- Gardens & Pond
- Mini Mazes
- Tennis courts.
- The mansion is closed, so you are unable to go inside.
- There are two mini mazes alongside the mansion.
- Ponds and waterfall are located in the south east, near the road.
- Dog Friendly.