History

Portrait of Thomas Bantock

Portrait of Thomas Bantock, OP893

Bantock House Museum was once the Wolverhampton home of first Thomas and Mary Bantock and then their son and his wife, Baldwin and Kitty Bantock.

A successful railway and canal agent, Scottish-born Thomas Bantock moved into what was then called New Merridale Farm in 1864.

Thomas became Mayor of Wolverhampton, as did his son, Baldwin, who left the property to his wife, Kitty, when he died in 1938, on the understanding that she bequeathed it to the town. She outlived him by 16 years, yet generously gave the house and park to Wolverhampton in 1938.

Having been a base for the local Home Guard during World War II, come peacetime, Wolverhampton Corporation turned the property into a museum, and the newly named Bantock House Museum opened in April 1948.

A keen gardener, Baldwin transformed the farmyard into the charming sunken Dutch Garden and planted the Rose Garden, as well as creating the colourful flower borders and Woodland Garden, which now forms part of the park’s nature trail.