The Mander family of Wolverhampton acquired the Mount in 1890 for £5000 and refurbished it extensively and then went on to build the beautiful and amazing Wightwick Manor which is the sister house to the Mount and is less than 1000m away, they share many likenesses in design, Wightwick Manor is now a popular national trust visit.
The Mount is remembered as the light, lavish and convenient of the two houses, although the interiors and furnishing are much the same 'Old English revival style’. The two houses were designed by the same architect and built by the same builders and craftsmen.
In addition there are striking contrasts between Wightwick’ s best room, the Great Parlour of 1893 in eclectic Cheshire style wood panelling and great craftsmanship and The Mount's Library of 1908 in a purer English Renaissance style. This is now the Great Hall of the hotel which many people choose to host their dream wedding in.
There is evidence that Thomas H. Mawson advised on works to the gardens in both houses, designing arched shelters and terraces with sandstone balustrades; steps led down to a pond with an island at the bottom of the hill, where skating was a popular pastime in the winter. Evidence of this still resides in the gardens at the Mount hotel where civil ceremonies often take place outside.
The Mount`s location was chosen as the hotel sits on top of a sandstone ridge, while Wightwick is set near the bottom of the hill, by the old canal. The Mount was a grander house with a more fun environment where Wightwick, was a serious Whig-Liberal intellectual property. This is still reflected today in their contradicting uses.
The Mount was built for comfort and entertaining, reputed for its French food and fine wine, where Wightwick was austere and all but teetotal. The Mount had a tradition of 'punishing the port', where at Wightwick Rosalie Mander would dispense Cornish mead, or Sunday morning sherry in jars saved from potted shrimps. Both Wightwick and The Mount were technically advanced and comfortable by the standards of the day, with central heating, electric light, and above all ingenious planning.
The Mount`s library is often described as one of the finest Edwardian rooms in the Midlands. With its sprung floor in Canadian maple, it was a magnificent setting for hunt balls, fancy dress balls, and today weddings.
The Mount was designed for entertaining on the grand scale, officially as well as privately. Charles Tertius Mander had been raised to a baronetcy for his public services in the Coronation Honours of 1911. He often entertained political speakers at the Mount. In addition many national figures stayed or visited, including Queen Mary (twice) and numerous public figures on their visits to the Midlands. Lloyd George was his guest as prime minister within a fortnight of the Armistice in 1918, when he announced the 'coupon election' campaign on 24 November. It is also said that in the 60`s the Hotel played host to stars such as The Beatles and Genesis.
Charles Tertius Mander was unfortunately killed in a hunting accident in 1929 leaving his wife Mary a widow. The Mount was far too large for post-war servant less living, and finally, in 1952 the house was sold by Charles Marcus Mander at auction after being in the family for just ninety years .With the surrounding areas of Tettenhall, Wrottersley and Perton swelling and Wolverhampton growing there was an ever-increasing need for a hotel so in 1952 a luxury hotel was born.
For More information on Wightwick Manor visit:
Sir Nicholas Mander of Owlpen Manor in the Cotswolds has also written a book on the Mander`s family History called Varnished Leaves which is available at: