Inside the huge abandoned mansion 50 miles from London that used to be ‘Batman’s home’ and has been left to rot
The UK and the areas around London especially are absolutely packed with stately homes, some of them still lived in, others now open to the public as heritage sites. All of them will have their own fascinating histories, but there is only one that can claim to be the home of Batman himself Bruce Wayne, and that is Mentmore Towers in Buckinghamshire. This spectacular nineteenth century country house was used as Wayne Manor, the home of the mysterious billionaire behind the Batman, in the 2005 Christian Bale led Batman Begins.
The mansion, built back in the 1850s by the mega-rich Rothschild family was also used to film the Mummy Returns in 2001, Johnny English in 2003, and Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut in 1999. But since then the mansion, located just 50 miles from London, has fallen on hard times. Once considered among the best of the entire Victorian era and designed by Sir Joseph Paxton – the man behind the Crystal Palace, the house now looks to be rotting from the inside out.
A recent video filmed by an urban explorer who managed to sneak a peak inside the house shows the grand interior nearly completely empty of furniture and with water leaking from a caved in roof in the worst parts of the building. Whilst sad to see, the video makes for fascinating viewing and you can just imagine how spectacular the £31million mansion would have been in its prime, filled with the Rothschild’s priceless art collection.
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The most recent era in the house’s history and current decline began when it was sold to a new owner, investor Simon Halabi, in 1999. He planned to turn the mansion into a luxurious hotel with 172 different suites for guests to stay in. Due to financial instability around the financial crash though, the project stalled and little work has happened at the property since, with English Heritage now listing the mansion as ‘at risk’.
Filmed in December 2021 by explorer and TikToker @Places_forgotten, the video runs through a number of different areas within the massive 70 room home, each illuminated just with torches creating an eerie feel compounded by the nearly deserted state it has been left in.
In the empty rooms golden chandeliers sit alongside caved in ceilings and empty shelves collecting dust. A small collection of wine bottles and crockery can be seen in the grimy looking kitchen, giving some of the few signs the home was ever actually lived in.
Elsewhere in a spectacularly decorated function room, paintings in golden frames lean up against walls surrounded by golden chairs while ornate gold leaf woodwork and panelling decorates the walls. A huge mirror over the fire place in the same room is complemented by a priceless looking clock, itself also covered in gold.
A snoop around the house’s now half emptied library reveals a secret doorway within a bookcase, adding yet more intrigue to the mansion, while the home’s once grand marble staircase is now overshadowed by huge patches of mould on the walls above.
The great hall of the house, famously the setting of an iconic ritual scene in Eyes Wide Shut, now sits empty bar a pair of sofas and a plain looking fireplace, a far cry from the grandeur seen in the Kubrick film.
Fortunately it looks as though Mentmore Towers may be in line to see some restoration work, English Heritage’s current assessment of the house is ‘poor’ but it adds that a “solution” has been “agreed but not yet implemented”. It would certainly be a shame to lose such a gem of Victorian architecture and film history.
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