Orginally named Hammerwood Lodge, Hammerwood Park was built in 1792 designed by Benjamin Henry Latrobe on the site of a simple ironmaster’s house.
Many of the properties in the village were built around the same time as tied cottages to the 2,500 acre Estate, which also included Thornhill House, at Ashurst Wood, the dower house to the Estate. The only two remaining English domestic houses designed by Latrobe are Hammerwood Park and Ashdown House in Forest Row.
In the mid 1860s Hammerwood Lodge was sold to the owner of Smith’s Bank (now incorporated into NatWest), Oswald Augustus Smith, who provided the money for a school for 100 children in the village as well as commissioning the building of St Stephen’s Church, Hammerwood and the rebuilding of St Peter’s Church, Holtye. He was the mainspring and chief benefactor of the Victoria Memorial Hospital in East Grinstead.
Bower House Cottage, the older part of The Bower House is believed to date to at least early 16th century with the initials of the owners, John and Elizabeth Botting engraved on the fireplace with the date 1595.