Explore Headley - Belmont

In his working notebook for 1888, The Rev W.H. Laverty (Rector 1872–1928) recorded, “now being built for us on ¼d Field [ie Farthing Field... ed], by George and Arthur King, their bricklayer Fred Gauntlett.”  The house was for his wife’s parents, Mr and Mrs de la Motte, but in the 1891 census it is registered as unoccupied.

It was then bought by the War Department for £2,500 on 31st July 1903 from Robert Young, and the first Brigade Major to live there was a Fitzclarence, grandson of William IV.  His wife was a Churchill, first cousin to the Duke of Marlborough, and he had a coachman named Morse.  He was followed by Major Butler, and Joseph Kemp and his wife were man-servant and maid to the family (1906–7), living presumably in Belmont Cottage (now demolished).

WD Marker
1940s WD Boundary Marker

During the First World War, Captain Thackeray and his wife and son, Reg, lived at Belmont when he was Staff Officer Musketry, first at Bordon, later for the whole Aldershot Command.  He had come from South Africa, where his uncle, Sir Thomas Scanliss, was Prime Minister of Cape Colony, and the famous eighteenth century hunter, Henry Hartley, was his grandfather.  Capt Thackeray served in the British South African Police during the Boer War.

(Joyce Stevens in to the Ar and Back)


The War Department marker stone at the corner of the drive dates to the Second World War when the house was requisitioned, and the boundaries marked.