Theresa Villiers, MP for Chipping Barnet, is backing the latest stage in the campaign to save the historic Trent Country Park in Enfield. A long-time supporter of the campaign to protect the park and the historic house it contains, Theresa is encouraging her constituents to sign the petition on this issue, recently launched by Cllr Jason Charalambous.
Trent Park used to belong to the Sassoon family, who entertained a number of famous guests there, including Charlie Chaplain, Lawrence of Arabia, George Bernard Shaw and Winston Churchill. During World War Two, the house was used by the War Office as an interrogation centre for high-ranking German prisoners of war and it is widely believed that Hitler’s deputy, Rudolf Hess, may have been held there.
The house and surrounding area were recently bought by Berkeley Homes for housing. Theresa has been working with Cllr Charalambous since last year to seek to ensure that the mansion is protected and that some community use is retained.
A petition to establish a museum on the site has already gathered 2,500 signatures. Theresa has taken the matter to the top, contacting Enfield Council to make the case for recognition of the historic nature of the house being a condition of planning permission. She has also lobbied Culture Minister, Ed Vaizey MP, to see if any assistance can be provided and she has been in contact with the Ministry of Defence to gain more information about the use of Trent Park to house prisoners of war.
Theresa Villiers said: “Although Trent Park is just outside my constituency, many of my constituents visit regularly and I believe this open space and its historic building should be protected. It is essential that the grounds remain open for public access and I would also like to see areas of the house used for a museum. I will continue to work to ensure Trent Park is conserved for future generations.”