St John's Jerusalem

St John's Jerusalem, Sutton at Hone: Address, Phone Number, St John's Jerusalem Reviews: 3.5/5

St John's Jerusalem
Points of Interest & Landmarks
National Trust property. Moated garden and 13th C chapel of Knights Hospitallers, tranquil, hidden gem in a small village not far from the Dartford Bridge.
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20 reviews
Very good

Live Life To The Full
Maidstone, UK1,366 contributions
Small And Secluded
Sep 2018 • Solo
This is a lovely little place, accessed via a driveway with a gate which you have to open and close yourself leading to a small grassed car park.

The property is only open on Wednesday's from 2pm, so I would recommend that you double this up with another NT property such as Red House as I did to make a full day out.

You can only access one room of the chapel and there is some information on the history of the property on the wall.

The property is surrounded by a moat, and there are some nice tranquil gardens that you can sit in or wander around the apple trees.

Not a huge place, but the volunteer on duty today was lovely and very helpful.
Written September 26, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Hertfordshire1,124 contributions
Quirky National Trust property with plenty of charm
Aug 2018 • Friends
St John's is a small and quirky property with an interesting history. You start your visit in the chapel of the Order of Knights of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem. It was a rest station for members of the order traveling from the coast to London. Buildings associated with this and other orders are very few remaining and this is why it is of interest to the Trust. The Order's role in the Crusades is rather played down while their more charitable efforts and protection of travellers gets prominence. The chapel has had a chequered history including having a floor added in Victorian times so it could be used as a billiards room! Once you've looked around the much altered chapel you can then explore the grounds. There is lots of shade and lots of water around so a good day out for hot weather.

This summer has been exceptionally hot and like many, the gardener who we stopped to chat to, was struggling to keep more formal planted areas looking in good condition. When we were there he was working on the summer boarders. He is clearly an experienced gardener but it did also look like he needed more support to keep up the gardens of this size. Overall the site was looking much greener than most other parks and gardens because it is surrounded by water - as the river has been diverted into a moat. Once defensive, the moat now provides an attractive feature for the gardens with many water-loving wild flowers. It is also an excellent place to watch dragonflies. There are several unusual trees including a group of walnut trees covered in fruit. The other highlight of the gardens is the orchard with unusual varieties of apples, pears and also gooseberries and blackberries. More could be made of this with some labels about the different varieties. If they are not sure what they are then Brogdale are only a few minutes down the road. It would be nice if this property could get a little more love and attention from the Trust without loosing its quirky charm. Facilities - there is no tea room - just bring a picnic.... but there are loos.
Written August 9, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Isabelle P
Sevenoaks, UK21 contributions
Potential to be a real gem.
Jul 2018 • Friends
How disappointing. We were so pleased to find a Wednesday afternoon that we could visit, and thought the old chapel was interesting, if a bit neglected. The gardens however, were such a disappointment. I will not compare it to other NT gardens as this is smaller and less grand, but it was so sad to see how mismanagement can result in such a loss of something special. This is a unique, historical, moated garden but the sole part-time gardener just does not have enough hours to tackle what needs doing. I understand that the house tenants are responsible for this. What sad neglect of their duty. We could see evidence of roses, arches, borders, beds, orchards, nuttery etc, but all so overgrown and neglected. The hard-working gardener was focussing his labours on the main herbaceous border, but even this was out of hand. Come on NT. This could be a real gem. So sad.
Written July 22, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Kent78 contributions
Delightful little gem of a garden
Apr 2018 • Solo
I think the reviews which say that this is not worth a visit are unnecessarily harsh - in the words of other reviewers, this is not a Chartwell or Knole, and doesn't pretend to be. Yes it's only open on a Wednesday from April to October, and no you can't get a cuppa and a slice of cake. However, it is one of the Trust's quirky little gems, a delightful garden full of colour and a tranquil haven so peaceful that it is hard to believe you are very near the M25. Go in spring for daffodils and blossom, summer for the wonderful long border, or just to enjoy a quiet afternoon in an English country garden.
Written April 4, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Zoe P
London, UK2 contributions
Dartford's Best Kept Secret
Jul 2017
Well, not quite Dartford - but only 10mins drive away this is a beautiful, tranquil haven with herbaceous borders bursting with colour and scent in the Spring and Summer. The garden is surrounded by a moat and has some stunning mature trees and a lovely cedar. A wonderful place to spend the afternoon - we've had many picnics under the indian bean tree and have returned home soothed by the place.
Written March 13, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Rick W
Sevenoaks, UK1,792 contributions
Not worth seeing!
May 2017 • Couples
Open only on Wednesday afternoons, St John's Jerusalem is a medieval chapel with an interesting connection to the crusades. It was established by the order of St John who provided accommodation for those on pilgrimages to the Holy Land (a kind of medieval Premier Inn!). The order also set up churches and 'hospices' in England - and this was one. From this order came the modern day St John's Ambulance.
So the story is interesting - but the site isn't! A medieval chapel - now part converted to a residential house and cut in half with a kitchen isn't very interesting. The small remaining room is white painted with a few lancet windows...and you can see it in 5 minutes! No toilets, cafe's or much else.
Sorry - but this must the be the NT's most boring property!
The place is quite hard to find - with an entrance off the Horley Road in Sutton at Hone. You can drive along a track to reach the house - or simply walk 300 yards from the road. We parked on the main road and walked.
Written May 5, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you for your feedback and highlighting to visitors, who might not realize, that the chapel is the only interior place to visit, with the remaining property tenanted, and bringing in much needed income to the Trust. However, the garden with the surrounding moat are generally considered to be delightful in spring and summer. So we hope people will enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of the garden as much as the history you have kindly given us of the building.
Written June 4, 2017
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Richard Pearson
Dartford, UK316 contributions
Jun 2016 • Family
Only open on Wednesdays. It is national trust so free to members.
Interesting although only a small chapel is open to the public. Nice peaceful walks around the grounds name it worthwhile.
Written August 23, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Kent, UK56 contributions
What a delight!
Aug 2016 • Family
This is very local to me and having lived here for quite a few years I've never managed to visit! Probably because it's only open on a Wednesday afternoon.

When you arrive you'll need to open the gate and drive down the long path, the parking area is very small but that said there was no problems parking.

There isn't too much to say about the chapel. It is what it is, which is very different to what it was many moons ago. When you arrive this is where you go to pay, a few quid is very reasonable as the gardens are quite limited compared to the usual national trust properties we visit.
The gardens are beautifully maintained as is the face of the property. Perfect for a picnic or a wander with the family in a very relaxing and tranquil environment. You wouldn't believe you were a couple of miles from dartford!

Written August 21, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Katie B
Greenhithe, UK17 contributions
A secret gem
Jul 2016 • Friends
This is VERY local to us but it is still really hard to find - gate off a busy road, hidden down a track across a field.

The parking is a bit dodgy as the grass is a bit long and, after a rain shower, a bit slippery.

The chapel is very simple but has a very calm atmosphere. One of the volunteers lent us his umbrella as it started to rain and we wanted to look at the garden. Luckily it stopped soon afterwards.

The gardens are beautiful. Divided into different 'rooms' with walls and hedges so you can wander about for ages. The hollyhocks are particularly lovely. We had a chat with the gardener about some of the trees and plants we wanted to know more about - look out for the Indian Bean Tree!

The river runs around the edge of the property and isn't fenced in all places so you'd need to keep a close eye on children/dogs as the edge is not always easy to see.

We'll definitely be returning.
Written July 29, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Janette B
Penzance, UK15 contributions
Go for the gardens not the chapel
Jun 2016 • Couples
We went to see the chapel built by the Knights Hospitallier but it has been so altered its integrity as a chapel is lost. We were told that one owner converted it to a house and kept the last 20 feet as a private chapel and a later owner made a door through a window and put in another floor with a kitchen below and billiards room upstairs. The gardens are pleasant and peaceful. More places to sit and relax would be nice.
Written July 27, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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