Country Houses

Course details

From £1145.00

Sun 12 Jul 2020 - Sat 18 Jul 2020

Country Houses


The Oxford Experience is a residential summer programme providing one-week courses in a variety of subjects aimed at non-specialists. It offers a choice of seminars each week over a period of six weeks.

The country house has been described as England’s most distinctive contribution to European culture. This course examines the growth of the country house phenomenon from the late middle ages to the present day. Among the many topics considered are the architecture of the houses themselves, the lives of their occupants (including servants) and the decline and resurgence of the country house during the 20th century. The field visit forms an integral part of the course.

Programme details

Seminars meet each weekday morning, 09.15-10.45 and 11.15-12.45, with afternoons free for course-related field trips, individual study or exploring the many beautiful places in and around the city.

Origins and the Tudor Country House

Into the 17th Century

The Georgian Period – the apogee of the English Country House

Field trip to Lacock Abbey

The Victorian Country House – industrialists and new money. The country house in the 20th century – a change of direction


Field Trip

Destination:     Lacock Abbey

Excursion Rating: Moderate
Up to two hours' walk on even ground or up to an hour's walk on rough and/or steep ground or up lots of stairs and steps.

Recommended reading

Airs, Malcolm.  1998.  The Tudor and Jacobean Country House: A Building History.  Sutton Publishing Ltd.

Crook, Joe Mordaunt.  2000.  The Rise of the Nouveaux Riches.  John Murray Publishers Inc.

Girouard, Mark.  1993.  Life in the English Country House.  Yale University Press.


During your course, you will stay in typical Oxford student accommodation at Christ Church in buildings which range from the 18th to the 20th century. Bedrooms are modestly-furnished, do not have air-conditioning and are arranged on a staircase of four or five floors.

The fee £1640 includes a bedroom with private bathroom facilities (shower, washbasin and toilet). Most are single but a few twins are available for couples or those who wish to share with a friend. Those couples wishing to book a twin room should contact us direct, as these rooms cannot be booked online.

There are also a few standard rooms available which all have their own washbasin and shaver point but the bath and toilet facilities on each staircase are shared. To apply for one of these rooms please select the ‘Programme Fee (with single standard accommodation and meals)’ option on the application form.  Early application for these rooms is essential.

Most standard rooms are single but there are a few ‘twin sets’ (two single rooms opening off a sitting room). If you wish to book a twin set, please contact us direct, as these rooms cannot be booked online.

Please indicate your accommodation preferences (either online or on your application form) together with a note of any mobility problems.

We regret that we are unable to offer you accommodation at Christ Church prior to or following your course. Additionally, family or friends who are not enrolled in the programme cannot be accommodated in college.


Programme fee (no accom–incl. field trip, lunch and dinner): £1145.00
Programme fee (with single en-suite accom, field trip and meals): £1640.00
Programme fee (with single standard accom, field trip and meals): £1455.00


Dr Nick Doggett


Nicholas Doggett is the Director and head of the heritage consultancy, Asset Heritage Consulting based in Oxford. He has taught for many years on The Oxford Experience and other summer schools.

Assessment methods

There are no assessments for this course.


Online registration closes on Friday, 1 May 2020 but please note that this course may be fully booked very quickly so early registration is recommended.