_. Charles Peter Symes Bullen, of Avington Park, near Winchester, died 17 September, 2020, aged 79.
He was a scion of that landed family, formerly of Catherton. Born at Whitchurch, Shropshire in 1941, son of Lt-Col John [Jack] Symes Bullen, by his wife the former Anne Harris-St John.
He had siblings, brothers Anthony and Michael, and sisters Anne and Jane. Jane Bullen, LVO, is the Princess Royal's Lady in Waiting, wife of Timothy Holderness-Roddam.
He was a grandson maternally of Charles Edward Harris-St John [1874-1953], by his wife the former Winifred Rose Dugdale [1891-1968], scion of that landed gentry family.
He married firstly in 1964, Elizabeth Allcock; married secondly, in 1981, Sarah Hickson [whose family bought Avington Park in 1951], daughter of Lt-Col John Hickson, MC, by his wife the former Audrey Mary Darrell-Huskinson [1918-99], and is survived by his second wife, and two daughters from his first marriage, Elizabeth Sarah [Lizzie] [born 1969], & Caroline Mary [born 1972].
Avington Park was mentioned in the 10th Century as Afintun, Avington originally belonged to the Cathedral of Winchester until King Henry VIII granted the estate to Edmund Clerke, who built the banqueting hall, now the Orangery.
In the mid C17th, Avington was owned by George Brydges, Groom of the Bedchamber to Charles II. He enlarged the house to accommodate the King and Nell Gwynne. The 3rd Duke of Chandos, a cousin, inherited the property and made many improvements, adding the leaded statues, fountain, redecorating and gilding the state rooms, as well as laying out the gardens and parkland, planting avenues and vistas.
His only child, married the Duke of Buckingham and Stowe, who became the Duke of Buckingham and Chandos, inheriting Avington, and played host to King George IV and Mrs Fitzherbert. The estate was sold in 1847 to Sir John Shelley, brother of the poet, and was sold to Lt. Col and Mrs Hickson in 1951, and is now in trust with their family.