At the September meeting, Dr Mark Ballard gave a talk entitled ‘New Light on the Austens of Sevenoaks. It is well known that Jane Austen’s great-uncle Francis Austen owned the Red House at one time, having bought it in 1743, and that she visited him there as a child. Less well known is that other houses in Sevenoaks were owned by other family members and several generations of Austens. The Old House and Kippington and Suffolk House had been owned by the family and they also had property in Horsmonden and Lamberhurst among other places. Francis Austen also started the long period of the Red House being used by lawyers, except for a short time as a school.

Adrienne Rogers
24 Sept. 2017

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