Introducing this website

This site showcases excerpts from interviews of people who have memories of working at or visiting Knole. They include descendants of Knole Estate employees, with stories from as early as 1880. This archive of people’s memories is now the largest such oral history archive within the National Trust.

Our archive also includes audio recordings from 1988-97, e.g. Lord Sackville’s butler of 40 years, William Hughes, and Head Guide, Barbara Tate, who worked at Knole for 50 years. These bring to life anecdotes from the years before the 1946 handing over of Knole to the Trust.

The Heritage Lottery Fund supported the initial two years of research and interviewing by a team of volunteers. Volunteers continue to build this archive of more than 200 interviews, as a material legacy of the Inspired by Knole Project, which started in 2013 and is expected to be completed by 2019. You can hear the voices of key staff, volunteers, consultants, conservators and contractors involved in the Knole Project, the biggest conservation project on a National Trust property.

If you have a memory of Knole which you’d like to share with us, or find out more about the Knole Oral History archive, please contact us at 

This page was added by Veronica Walker-Smith on 12/07/2012.

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