Lord and Lady Brabazon (later Meath) leased Ottershaw Park in 1882. They enjoyed their time in the area so much they acquired a cottage opposite the Anningsley Park gates two years later, which they proceeded to enlarge. Upon the death of his father in 1887, Lord Barabazon became the 12th Earl of Meath. Around 1900 they bought Ottermead and about ten years later built Chaworth House where they lived for the rest of their lives.
Lord and Lady Meath were active supporters of various charities. The Earl carried out ‘good works’ concerned with his strong belief in the British Empire and founded Empire Day in 1903 on the anniversary of Queen Victoria’s birthday. He was also a founder of The Open Spaces Society to retain open spaces in towns for recreation and health.
The Countess of Meath, daughter of the 11th Earl of Lauderdale, was one of the most remarkable and successful philanthropists of her age. She worked tirelessly for her mission to help the less fortunate and to relieve poverty. She founded the Ministering Children’s League in 1885, which built the Meath Home, one of several world-wide orphanages helping children later gain employment and settle into the world. After the Second World War it was used to help children suffering with lung complaints and asthma. From 1982 it became Meath School specialising in speech and language difficulties.
Lady Meath suffered ill health for most of her life and travelled overseas extensively with her husband supposedly to aid her health. However, even abroad she continued setting up Ministering Children’s League homes wherever she visited. When she died in 1918 she left her property to the League to continue her work.