George Everest’s former home, Crickhowell
George Everest’s former home, The Manor, Crickhowell
The world’s highest mountain is named after George Everest, who lived here as a child and was probably born here. The large house is now an hotel called The Manor.
The property was known as the Manor of Gwernvale when solicitor Tristram Everest, George’s father, bought it in the 18th century. According to local historian Cyril James, the surname was pronounced “Eve” and “rest”. George was born in 1790. As a teenager he trained for a military career and was posted to India, then under British colonial rule. He soon became involved in surveying, and became Surveyor General of India in 1830. His name was given to the highest peak in the Himalayas after his retirement. He died in 1866.
The manor’s appearance today is largely the result of building works in the early 19th century, probably ordered by Tristram. However, the manor existed back in the 13th century, when it was part of the wedding dowry of Lady Sybil Pauncefoot (or Pauncefote), whose effigy you can see in Crickhowell church.
One of the manor’s later owners was Sir Henry Proger (d.1686), a staunch Royalist and equerry to King Charles II. During the Civil War he fled to Madrid, where he later took part in the assassination of a Parliamentary envoy sent by Oliver Cromwell. On the monarchy’s restoration in 1660, Henry returned to Britain and was knighted.
Gwernvale later passed into the hands of writer and clergyman Dr Samuel Croxall. He was chaplain to King George I and an outspoken Whig radical (the Whigs were predecessors of the Liberals). In 1722 he produced an illustrated edition of Aesop’s Fables.
The Pirie-Gordon family owned the manor in the early 20th century. During the First World War, Mrs Pirie-Gordon was secretary of the committee which welcomed Belgian refugees to the district. Lieut Harry Pirie-Gordon was decorated for his bravery during the attempted invasion of Turkey at Gallipoli in 1915. During the Second World War the manor provided shelter for refugee families and was briefly used as a military hospital.
The remains of a Neolithic tomb can be seen at the entrance to The Manor’s grounds from the A40.
Postcode: NP8 1SE View Location Map