Where is Crookham Hall?

The Iris Woodmore Mysteries are set in north east Hampshire, where I live, and inspired by real-life events in 1920s Britain.

Below, I take you on a tour of some of the Hampshire locations featured in Death at Crookham Hall.

The Four Seasons Hotel, Dogmersfield Park

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Above is a photo of the Four Seasons Hotel, a restored Georgian manor house in Dogmersfield Park, Hampshire. It was once called Dogmersfield House.

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Crookham Hall, the ancestral home of Lord Tobias Timpson, is based on Dogmersfield House, a typical Georgian country house with additional wings added later to form a three-sided courtyard. 

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Originally a palace stood on the site, and it was where Henry VIII met his future wife, Catherine of Aragon.

The Basingstoke Canal

Dogmersfield Park encompasses parkland, farmland, and woodland – and the Basingstoke Canal follows a looping course around two-thirds of the estate.

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Iris walks along the canal path from Walden (Fleet) to the Moffats' farmhouse and then onto the Crookham estate. 

Blacksmith's Bridge

Blacksmith’s Bridge, built in 1792, sits over the Basingstoke Canal and plays a prominent role in the novel. 

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On one side of the bridge is the poverty and squalor of the shacks that have sprung up on the grounds of the Moffats' farmhouse. On the other side of the bridge is the wealth and grandeur of the Crookham estate.

The bridge provides the link between these two worlds. Rather than the stylised world of the flapper girl, I wanted to explore the social inequalities of the time.

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Fleet, Hampshire

Iris's hometown of Walden is based on the town of Fleet in Hampshire, which once included the parishes of Church Crookham, Crookham Village and Dogmersfield.

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Iris works for The Walden Herald, and the newspaper's offices and Laffaye Printworks are situated on Queens Road (actually Kings Road off Fleet Road).

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Iris's boss, Elijah Whittle, lives in a cottage on Church Road, and Labour MP Donald Anstey has a house further up the road passed the church.

Fleet Pond, Hampshire

Fleet Pond, the largest freshwater lake in Hampshire, is the inspiration for Waldenmere Lake.

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Fleet Pond is a Site of Special Scientific Interest and home to a diverse range of species thanks to its varied habitats. Fleet Pond Nature Reserve encompasses heathland, marshland, woodland, reedbeds, and, of course, the lake.

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I believe the above photograph was taken at the Kenilworth Viewpoint at Fleet Pond. The date of the photo is unknown, but the lady's clothing would suggest the 1920s.

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Above is the jetty at the Hemelite Bay corner of Fleet Pond, close to Fleet railway station. This is the jetty where Iris first sees Donald Anstey and watches while he throws sweet violets into the water. 

The Great Hall, Winchester


In Death at Crookham Hall, a trial is held at the Hampshire Assizes in the Great Hall, Winchester. The assizes were court circuits presided over by visiting judges from the higher courts.

Criminal trials were held in the Great Hall  until the 1970s, when a new courtroom was built to the east of the hall.

The Great Hall provides a spectacular setting as it's built on the remnants of Winchester Castle and has stained-glass windows and medieval aisled halls. Iris describes it as like walking into a cathedral rather than a courtroom.

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Inside the Great Hall

Join me on a brief video tour of some of the locations featured in Death at Crookham Hall.

The Iris Woodmore Mysteries are available in hardback, paperback, ebook and audiobook from Amazon and bookstores.