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Originally given by King John to the knights of St. John of Jerusalem soon after the creation of their order in the eleventh century, Winkburn Estate was given by Edward VI to William Burnell and his wife Constance in 1548 as compensation for their surrender of land in Surrey to Edward’s father, Henry VIII.

Their descendants remained at Winkburn until the early twentieth century and references to the family remain at Winkburn Church. The sale of the estate by the Burnell family in the early part of the twentieth century triggered a series of sales before it was bought by Sir Philip Barber in the early 1950’s following the nationalisation of the Barber family coal mine in 1947. Today the estate remains in the ownership of Sir Philip’s great grandson.