Originally known as Bruntwood Hall, the hotel was built in 1861 as the residence of Stuff Merchant, John Douglas, and it was named Bruntwood after his wife’s Scottish heritage. During World War 2, Bruntwood Hall was the Town Hall of Cheadle and Gatley Urban District of Cheshire. Later, it became one of the finest equestrian studs in the North of England, a nod to its namesake Stud Bar and Galloping Major restaurant, and then it became home to an entertainment company.
John Douglas – Born in 1809, Married Janet Andrew, and Died in Bruntwood Hall, England in 1863
Janet Andrew – Born in 1811 and Died in 1877
An imposing Victorian Gothic building, Bruntwood Hall – now home to the gloriously opulent Oddfellows on the Park – was first constructed in 1861. Situated at the centre of the sprawling acres of parkland offered by Bruntwood Park, this boutique destination offers a sense of serenity while also being a stone’s throw away from the bright lights of the in-vogue city of Manchester.
Originally built for John Douglas, a successful wool, linen and silk merchant from Yorkshire, the name of Bruntwood Hall was inspired by his wife’s east Ayrshire roots. Unfortunately, Douglas tragically died in 1863 – only two years after moving into the property he had worked his entire life to build. The property then fell into a period of continual change, serving as Cheadle and Gatley Town Hall during the Second World War, the home to a timber supply company, and even a racehorse farm.
It could be said that – particularly during the late twentieth century – this once great and much loved hall was considerably less chic and significantly more shabby. In fact, its eerie nature and foreboding Gothic style was seized upon by a television production company who used Bruntwood Hall as the setting for a former mental asylum featured in the disturbing drama, Bedlam.
However, in a glorious reincarnation, Bruntwood Hall was reinvented as the desirable Oddfellows on the Park, with the magnificent property finally enjoying the appreciation it deserves. Meticulously and creatively restored, Oddfellows is now renowned for its eclectic quirkiness and unashamed luxury. With interiors that hark back to its original architecture and design, the hall’s classic Victorian features – including mosaic floors, original tiles, oak woodwork, and arched doors with ornate ironwork – have been amplified with modern quirks and elegant decor.
With a destination restaurant, the Galloping Major, celebrating one the hall’s more notorious owners who is said to have acquired the status of a local legend, and two handsome and distinctive cocktail bars, each and every one of the beautifully appointed rooms exude a level of sophistication and unconventional elegance. With a sense of quintessential Englishness running through the property, Oddfellows on the Park is quite simply an opulent yet off-the-wall gem.