During the Great War, relations between the family and the town were very strained. Charles became seriously ill and took his own life in 1923, leaving the Estate to his 12-year-old son. It was looked after by trustees until Victor was 21. Emma died in 1935 and Walter in 1937, having given his museum to the State; a year later Victor, third Lord Rothschild, put most of the Estate up for sale. He gave the town the Victoria Hall and the Cricket Club its ground, while the local councils acquired the woodlands, allotments and recreation grounds; the Mansion became a school in 1945.
The park, however, was retained and in 1960 Victor’s son Jacob planned to return to Tring and build a new house amid the parkland. This did not progress beyond the footings, which can still be found. Plans for a bypass to cut the park in half were unsuccessfully resisted by Victor’s sister Miriam, another distinguished scientist. In 1989 the section south of the bypass was sold; the buyer, Whitbread, wanted to build a golf course and hotel but in view of the beauty and scientific importance of the chalk grassland, consent was not forthcoming and they sold it to Dacorum Borough Council, which then leased it to the Woodland Trust. Rothschild family trusts continue to maintain the Louisa Cottages almshouses and to support local causes. As Lord of the Manor, Jacob, fourth Lord Rothschild, officiated at the opening of Tring Local History Museum in 2011 and the reopening of Hastoe Village Hall a year later.
Thanks to Tim Amsden & Tring & District Local History & Museum Society.