Harefield Place was built as Harefield Lodge in 1786 for Sir Roger Newdigate. John Newdigate had become Lord of Harefield Manor during the reign of Henry VIII and the family remained in possession of the estate until the C20th. Most of the grounds were sold in the 1930s and developed for housing, part now forming Uxbridge Golf Course, and Harefield Place became a hospital in 1934, later used for offices. There are some remnants of the earlier landscaping near the house.
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The place-name Harefield in Anglo-Saxon comes from Herefelle meaning 'open land used by an army'. Harefield Place is a late C18th mansion, which was built as Harefield Lodge in 1786 by Henry Couchman for Sir Roger Newdigate of Harefield, an antiquary and benefactor of Oxford University, founder of the Newdigate Prize for Poetry. The Newdigate family was related to Sir Thomas Egerton, Lord Chancellor to Queen Elizabeth I. Sir Thomas and his second wife, Alice, Countess of Derby lived at Harefield where among their guests was Elizabeth I, before whom Shakespeare's 'Othello' was played. The old manor house was situated near Harefield parish church of St Mary (q.v.), its site now that of the Anzac memorial. John Newdigate became Lord of Harefield Manor during the reign of Henry VIII and the family remained in possession of the estate until the C20th; numerous members of the family have memorials in the parish church, the oldest brass in the church being that of Editha Newdigate who died in 1444.
In 1934 127.86 acres of the former parkland of Harefield Place Estate was purchased by Middlesex County Council. Harefield Place was taken over for use as part of Hillingdon Hospital and was later refurbished as offices in 1983-5. Most of the grounds were developed for housing, part now forming Uxbridge Golf Course (q.v.). In Harvil Road, at the north end, the picturesque early C19th North Lodge remains. Harefield Place is approached through shrubbery planting; there are mature limes and oaks on a dramatically sloping lawn to the south of the house, descending into shrubberies with notable willows. Other remnants of earlier landscape features include a terrace outside the house, remains of a walled garden, and stables.
Victoria County History, Sale particulars of 1877 [GLRO Acc 1085/EM13]; Ben Weinreb & Christopher Hibbert, 'The London Encyclopaedia' (Macmillan, revised ed. 1993); Bridget Cherry and Nikolaus Pevsner, 'The Buildings of England London 3: North West' (Penguin, 1999 edition); Arthur Mee, 'The King's England, London North of the Thames except the City and Westminster (Hodder & Stoughton, 1972 edition).