One careful resident, since refurbishment in 1603 — the Sackville family, who still live there though it is now owned by the nation and managed by the National Trust. Literary note: yes, Vita Sackville-West lived here for a time and was visited by her lover, Virginia Woolf, who wrote about the house in Orlando (1928).
It was always said to be a Calendar House, with 365 rooms, 52 staircases, 12 entrances and 7 courtyards, P G Wodehouse added that it also had [only] 20 bathrooms! Modernisation has removed some staircases and added some yards, but it is certainly substantial — the footprint is 4 acres!
Some of you know my preoccupation with drains and plumbing generally. One of the things that impressed me at Knole was the Jacobean leadwork — the magnificent ornamental rainwater heads with turrets and fretwork. Other examples have initials, dates, chequers, stars, chevrons and bartizans.
But wait — I’ve found another photo.
1749 — what happened then? Can’t find out — maybe they just renovated the plumbing! Does anybody know?