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The house, built by William and Matilda Blanche Gibbs and furnished by several generations of the Gibbs family, is a Victorian time capsule remarkable for the completeness of its interiors. It was built on wealth gained from fertilisers and banking.

The death of the 2nd Baron Wraxall last year called into question the future of the Tyntesfield estate. Christie’s were called in by Lord Wraxall’s executors to appraise the contents and a team of staff spent the first three and a half months of this year making a comprehensive overview of the collection. The prospect that the estate would be sold, split up and the house’s contents dispersed, prompted a public campaign to save Tyntesfield.

The National Trust has purchased the house, its park and estate buildings, plus its contents and the home farm. The final purchase price has not been revealed. Although the buildings and land purchased by the Trust were price guided at £7.5m, further money was required for the contents and a total of £24m in grants and donations has been pledged towards the purchase.

The £17.425m lion’s share from the National Heritage Memorial Fund involved dipping into the Fund’s endowment core. Two anonymous benefactors gave donations of £4m and £1m while the National Trust’s Save Tyntesfield Campaign produced £1.5m from over 50,000 individual donations. This is the first country house the Trust has bought for a decade.

A small fraction of Tyntesfield’s contents, pieces not core to the collection, were not acquired by the Trust and it is envisaged that these will be auctioned by Christie’s at a future date.