Visiting a stately stack in the eighteenth century

brodsworth-conserved.jpgKeeping it short today but there are two links if you would like to find out more.

I have come across a rather interesting article on the British Library Blog.  For those of you who like your Jane Austen you may recall that Lizzie Bennet’s opinion of Fitzwilliam Darcy went a sea change once she clapped eyes on his stately pile in the country.  Sight seeing isn’t a modern phenomenon but what I didn’t realise was the by the eighteenth century many house owners had recourse to guide books.  The British Library cites the example of Burghley House and Duncombe Park.  Sadly there were no references to halls leading me to wonder whether Houses and Parks were deemed to be of greater merit than halls – of course, its an interesting question but sadly not one I have an answer to.

It also turns out that some houses allowed anybody to wander around whilst others only allowed the quality to take a turn around the long gallery. Today of course many halls are in the care of organisations other than the families that originally owned them.. There are exceptions though.  Burton Agnes Hall in EastYorkshire is a Jacobean hall, though like Hardwick Hall the remnants of the earlier medieval hall is close by.   It is still a family home.

Newby Hall, another Yorkshire hall, is also a family home and like the two properties identified above the Adam style gem was built close to the medieval hall which fell into ruin.

The rebuilding of older halls continued into the nineteenth century.   Nidd Hall is an example of the later phase of hall building by a Victorian businessman who was buying it to the idea of the gentry.  Brodsworth Hall, pictured at the start of the post, tells a similar story – leading to the question how many of these rebuilds came about because men with aspirations visited older halls and when the opportunity arose built one of their own?

The next post will be abut Nunnington Hall and Bonnie Prince Charlie…and another Christmas Ghost story.


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4 responses to “Visiting a stately stack in the eighteenth century

  1. Bob Mather.

    Thank you for your series of blogs. Entertaining and educational. Re Hall as opposed to stately lilies, I am sure that if the archaeological buffs oils knock down and dig, original Halls would be found on most sites. Seasonal greetings.

  2. Sir Kevin Parr , Baronet.

    Nice article.Although recalling Will Cowper and the Task,one sees the mole same as man building monuments that may record the damage he has done . Rather a point as now those piles , as sweet in history as they stand are but baubles owned mainly by British Government in name National Trust. Slowly they started now own not just our homes but most our coastal lands and Islands. Then you may not pass your home to your offspring.. Is it fair to say that the Government owes us all. We talk of the power of Kings but we had civil war to sort that out.Now the parliament is far far stronger than any King in history. Be afraid be terrified as what ever is said is recorded. I love that Country that gave me birth but it is corrupt and now out of control. Ghosts , yes many and most found in columns of concrete on M1 motorway. More than even those who walk the Tower Green gardens. Investigate how many institutions and companies belong to Government and why County Councils, that are in fact owed; in business but are attached to Local Government ,We hang on to history perhaps as nothing is left for a man to call his own bar his child. Even then it seems Government can take him or her off you for the slightest mistake. Your boy called by demand to fight a war started by Governments who have members sitting watching .Investment in metal and weapons and edge all bets but never fight along side you. Bitter, today that is so. My appeal against Trust for the ownership of my home and lands has yet again failed. i reside abroad as here I was allowed to build what ever I wanted and had it passed as mock Tudor. In UK.Forget it. One wishes you a merry Christmas and I await your ghost tales but I bet will be tame next to mine.

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