Saturday, 15 October 2016

(234) Atkinson of Angerton Hall

Atkinson of Angerton
The Atkinsons of Angerton and of Lorbottle (who must have been related although I have not established the connection between them), both maintained the tradition that their ancestors were anciently settled in Northumberland. Burke's Landed Gentry in 1850 noted that one William Atkynson was recorded as the owner of Buckton Tower in 1460, but noted that 'a fire having occurred at Brankston, which destroyed a number of the family registers, it would be difficult to make a connected history with precision'. 

The ancestors of the Atkinsons of Angerton were prosperous merchants in Newcastle-on-Tyne from at least the 17th century. Henry Atkinson (1670-1759), a coal factor (or hostman), was a cultivated man: he is noted as the owner of the earliest surviving violin music book from north-east England, and must therefore have been an amateur musician; he also assisted Henry Bourne with his History of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, 1736. His son, Henry Atkinson (1713-93), likewise a coal factor, was the father of four sons who lived to maturity and all of whom became merchants at Newcastle in various different trades. The eldest and longest-lived, Ralph Atkinson (1749-1827), who was a timber merchant, seems to have been the most successful, and at his death left a fortune of some £80,000, including the Angerton estate and property in Newcastle. It is not clear when he acquired Angerton, where there had not previously been a gentry house, but by 1825 he had 'erected a neat mansion house' and improved the land. When he died in 1827 it was noted that he was the last Atkinson of the male line, and as he had no wife or children to provide for, he left the Angerton estate to his great-nephew, James Henry Hollis Bradford (1819-71), on condition that he took the name Atkinson. His Newcastle property was left to the children of his sister, Jane Rutherford, on similar terms.

James Henry Hollis Bradford Atkinson came of age and married in 1840 and just two years later John Dobson, the Newcastle architect, was commissioned to rebuild Angerton Hall. The existing house was almost certainly less than fifty years old and perhaps much less, so it is not obvious why replacing it was necessary. If it was planned as the occasional country retreat of a bachelor gentleman merchant, it may, perhaps, have simply been too small for permanent residence by a married man. If James built in the expectation of providing a home for a large and growing family, however, he was disappointed, for he and his wife had no children. When he died in 1871 the estate passed to his brother, Lt-Col. Ralph Bradford (1823-88), who also had to take the name Atkinson. He had two sons and three daughters to continue the family line, but both his sons died unmarried and the elder, Maj. Thomas Henry Hollis Bradford Atkinson (1860-1943) sold Angerton before he retired from the army in 1899, and lived out his long retirement in the hunting country around Melton Mowbray (Leics) and in London.


Angerton Hall, Hartburn, Northumberland


There was not a gentry seat of any antiquity at Angerton, but writing in 1825, Mackenzie notes that 'Ralph Atkinson Esq. of Newcastle, has erected a neat mansion house, and greatly improved the adjoining lands by excellent drains and enclosures'. This must be the house which in 1828 John Dobson of Newcastle was employed to repair and where he built a new chapel.


Angerton Hall: a view from the south-east in 1977. Image: Historic England.
The present stone Tudor Revival house was designed by John Dobson of Newcastle in 1842 for James Henry Holles Atkinson, and has symmetrical south and east fronts. The entrance is on the north side, where a big gabled porch balances a large cross-wing. The elevations are marked by plain gables, unfussy battlements, and tall mullioned and transomed windows with plain hoodmoulds set in flat expanses of wall. There was originally a large service wing attached to the west side of the house; this was much reduced in size in 1957 and the remainder is now a separate dwelling. 


Angerton Hall: a reused Rococo panel in the drawing room.
Image: Historic England
On the north side, a big gabled porch leads into an entrance hall with a coffered ceiling and ornamental bosses. The drawing room has an 18th century Rococo plaster panel with ho-ho birds inset over the door, which looks like the work of the Francini from nearby Cambo; it may have come from the previous house on the site but cannot have started life there, as it must date from the 1740s or 1750s. Otherwise the Dobson interiors are simple, manly and dignified. The staircase has chunky twisted balusters and plaster panels on the walls with borders of low-relief fruit and flowers. The ceilings in the main rooms have grids of moulded beams; the walls of the dining room are panelled, and those of the ante room and drawing room have plaster panels.


Angerton Hall: staircase in 1977. Image: Historic England.

The gardens were laid out in 1904-07 by Sir Edwin Lutyens and Gertrude Jekyll, with rock-faced terrace walls and fancy wrought-iron gates south of the house, a little summerhouse to the east, and a pergola and gateways in the Victorian walled garden to the north-east.

Descent: built for Ralph Atkinson (1749-1827); to great-nephew, James Henry Hollis Bradford (later Atkinson) (1819-71); to brother, Lt-Col. Ralph Atkinson (1824-88); to son, Maj. Thomas Henry Hollis Bradford Atkinson (1860-1943) who sold before 1899 to Frederick Straker (1862-1941); to widow, Edith Gertrude Straker (1869-1944); to son, Lt-Col. Richard Straker (1896-1949); to widow, Bettina Straker (d. 1954); sold after her death...


Atkinson family of Angerton Hall



Atkinson, Henry (1713-93). Son of Henry Atkinson* (1670-1759) of Newcastle-on-Tyne and his second wife, Margaret Lawson, baptised 7 October 1713. A coal factor (hostman) at Newcastle. He married, 2 June 1743 at Woodhorn (Northbld), Jane Watson (d. 1780), and had issue:
(1) Jane Atkinson (1744-46), baptised at All Saints, Newcastle, 10 January 1744; died young and was buried at Newcastle, 4 March 1746;
(2) Henry Atkinson (1747-55), baptised at All Saints, Newcastle, 13 January 1747; died young and was buried at Newcastle, 16 January 1755;
(3) Ralph Atkinson (1749-1827) (q.v.);
(4) John Atkinson (1750-1818), born 8 May 1750 and baptised at All Saints, Newcastle; married, 19 July 1792 at Christ Church, Tynemouth (Northbld), Barbara Coward, but had no issue; died 19 March 1818 and was buried at All Saints, Newcastle;
(5) James Atkinson (1751-1816) (q.v.);
(6) Charles Atkinson (1752-78), baptised at All Saints, Newcastle, 27 August 1752; merchant at Newcastle; died unmarried and without issue, 27 January 1778; will proved 18 April 1778;
(7) William Atkinson (1754-56), baptised at All Saints, Newcastle, 7 September 1754; died young and was buried at Newcastle, 7 April 1756;
(8) Henry Atkinson (b. 1756), baptised at All Saints, Newcastle, 13 April 1756; perhaps died young;
(9) Jane Atkinson (b. 1757), born 3 August 1757; married 19 November 1785 at All Saints, Newcastle, Thomas Rutherford (d. 1814), rope maker, and had issue one son (who died in infancy) and two daughters; said to be living in September 1829.
He was buried at All Saints, Newcastle-on-Tyne, July 1793. His wife was buried at All Saints, Newcastle, 6 January 1780.
*Notable as the owner of the earliest surviving violin tune-book from north-east England, compiled in 1694-95.

Atkinson, Ralph (1749-1827). Second son of Henry Atkinson (1713-93) of Newcastle-on-Tyne and his wife Jane Watson, baptised 11 July 1749. A successful timber merchant at Newcastle. Described in his obituary as 'the last male descendant of an ancient family in Northumberland and cousin to the Earl of Eldon and Lord Stowell' (whose mother was Jane Atkinson, his father's sister). He was unmarried and without issue.
He purchased the Low Angerton estate and built a new house there before 1823. At his death he bequeathed his estates in Northumberland in trust for his great nephew, James Henry Holles Bradford (1819-71) and his property in Newcastle in trust for the children of his sister, Jane Rutherford.
He died 16 May and was buried at All Saints, Newcastle, 25 May 1827; his will was proved June 1827 (effects under £80,000).

Atkinson, James (1751-1816). Fourth son of Henry Atkinson of Newcastle-on-Tyne and his wife Jane Watson, born 29 July and baptised 29 August 1751. Rope maker at Newcastle, in partnership with his brother-in-law, Thomas Rutherford, until 1798. He married, 3 April 1777 at All Saints, Newcastle, Mary Lawton (1756-1818), and had issue:
(1) Jane Atkinson (1778-80), baptised at All Saints, Newcastle, 12 March 1778; died in infancy, 6 January 1780;
(2) Mary Anne Atkinson (1785-1830) (q.v.).
He died 11 February and was buried at All Saints, Newcastle, 22 February 1816. His widow died 17 June and was buried at All Saints, Newcastle, 11 July 1818.

Atkinson, Mary Anne (1785-1830). Daughter of James Atkinson of Newcastle-on-Tyne and his wife Mary Lawton, baptised at All Saints, Newcastle, 14 November 1785. From 1819-25 she lived in Edinburgh and from 1825-29 in India while her second husband was Commander-in-Chief of British forces in Scotland and at Bombay. She married 1st, 12 May 1807 at St Mary, Newcastle-on-Tyne, Lt-Col. Charles Philip Ainslie (1779-1811) and 2nd, 1 June 1818 at Fulham (Middx), as his second wife, Lt-Gen. Sir Thomas Bradford GCB GCH (1777-1853), son of Thomas Bradford of Woodlands, Doncaster (Yorks WR) and Ashdown Park (Sussex), and had issue:
(1.1) Maj-Gen. Charles Philip Ainslie (later de Ainslie) (1808-89), born 18 March and baptised 12 April 1808 at St Andrew, Newcastle-on-Tyne; educated at Charterhouse; served in the Army (Lieutenant, 1825; Captain, 1830; Major, 1842; Lt-Col., 1847; Colonel, 1857; Major-General 1862); Col. of 1st Dragoons, 1869; fought a duel near Canterbury with Lord Elibank (then engaged to his sister), 1832; changed his name to de Ainslie by deed poll in 1879; author of The Cavalry Manual, 1843, Sketches Here and There, 1877; Life as I have found it, 1883; Historical Record of the First, or Royal Regiment of Dragoons, 1887; married 1st, 17 April 1834 at Kinfauns (div. 1843), the Hon. Jane Anne (1806-73), daughter of Francis Gray, 14th Lord Gray; and 2nd, 13 July 1843, Lady Sarah Elisa (1813-47), daughter of the 11th Earl of Strathmore & Kinghorne and widow of G.A. Campbell; died 1889;
(1.2) Mary Anne Ainslie (1809-82), born 28 December 1809 and baptised at St. Marylebone (Middx), 27 January 1810; married, 23 April 1833, John Gray (1798-1867), 15th Lord Gray; died without issue at Pau (France), 16 February 1882;
(1.3) Philip James Robert Ainsley (b. & d. 1811), born 25 November 1811; died in infancy, 25 December 1811;
(2.1) James Henry Hollis Bradford (later Atkinson) (1819-71) (q.v.);
(2.2) Elizabeth Mary Bradford (1821-1906), born in Edinburgh, 29 August 1821; married, 13 April 1847 at St George's Hanover Square, London, as his second wife, Rev. Henry Joseph Maltby (1814-63), rector of Egglescliffe (Durham), son of Rt. Rev. Edward Maltby, Bishop of Durham, and had issue three sons and two daughters; died 2 November 1906; will proved 1 December 1906 (effects £5,840);
(2.3) Georgiana Augusta Frederica Bradford (1822-61), baptised in Edinburgh, 1822; married, 23 April 1846, Rev. Henry Richard Ridley (1815-1901), son of Sir Mathew White Ridley, 3rd bt. and had issue six daughters; died 9 January 1861;
(2.4) Ralph Bradford (later Atkinson) (1823-88) (q.v.);
(2.5) Barbara Bradford (c.1825-97), born in Edinburgh c.1825; married, 30 June 1853 at St Peter, Pimlico (Middx), Lt-Col. Hew Dalrymple Fanshawe (c.1818-99), son of Lt-Gen. Fanshawe CB, of the Royal Engineers, and had issue two sons and one daughter; buried at Henley-on-Thames (Oxon), 11 December 1897.
She died on the passage from India to England in about May 1830 and was presumably buried at sea. Her first husband died at Messina, 19 December 1811 and was buried at All Saints, Newcastle in 1812; his will was proved 10 June 1812. Her widower married 2nd, 13 July 1840, Anne Elizabeth (1809-68), widow of Benjamin Goad of Harley St., London, and died in London, 28 November 1853; his will was proved 30 March 1854.

Bradford (later Atkinson), James Henry Hollis (1819-71). Elder son of Gen. Sir Thomas Bradford GCB GCH (1777-1853) and his first wife, Mary Anne Atkinson (1785-1840), born 9 March 1819. Educated at Eton. A cornet in the Royal Horse Guards. He assumed the surname of Atkinson in lieu of Bradford in 1840 on coming of age and entering into his inheritance of the Angerton estate. JP and DL for Northumberland; High Sheriff of Northumberland, 1847. Vice-President of the Morpeth Mechanical & Scientific Institution and Chairman of Morpeth Dispensary. He married, 19 March 1840, Anne Louisa (d. 1893), daughter of William Ellice, but had no issue.
He inherited the Angerton estate from his great-uncle in 1827, and rebuilt the house to the designs of John Dobson in 1842.
He died 20 October and was buried at Hartburn, 26 October 1871; will proved 27 December 1871 (effects under £35,000). His widow died in London, 28 September 1893; her will was proved 30 October 1893 (effects £34,423).

Bradford (later Atkinson), Lt-Col. Ralph (1823-88). Younger son of Gen. Sir Thomas Bradford GCB GCH (1777-1853) and his first wife, Mary Anne Atkinson, born 6 October 1823. An officer in the Grenadier Guards (Lt., 1840; Capt., 1845; Lt-Col., 1854). JP for Oxfordshire and later Northumberland; High Sheriff of Northumberland, 1887-88. He married, 16 September 1858, Amy Emily Sarah (1833-1901), daughter of Lt-Col. Hugh Fitzroy of the Grenadier Guards, and had issue:
(1) Lucy Bradford (later Atkinson) (1859-1907), born Oct-Dec 1859; died unmarried in Valencia (Spain), 28 March 1907; administration of her goods granted to her brother, 13 May 1907 (estate £13,326);
(2) Thomas Henry Holles Bradford (later Atkinson) (1860-1943) (q.v.);
(3) Mary Grace Bradford (later Atkinson) (1867-1951), baptised at Kempsford (Glos), 23 February 1867; married, 2 July 1889, Eustace Rochester Wigram (1860-1940) of Coldstream Guards, and had issue one son and one daughter; died 14 March 1951; will proved 11 June 1951 (estate £5,043);
(4) Henry William Almeric Bradford (1869-1962), born 20 August and baptised at Broughton Poggs (Oxon), 25 September 1869; educated at Eton and Merton College, Oxford (matriculated 1888); died unmarried, 15 February 1962; will proved 16 August 1962 (estate £82,054);
(5) Anne Barbara Bradford (later Atkinson) (1880-1964); married 1st, 30 March 1905 at St. Marylebone (Middx), Lt. Ian Ludovic Andrew Carnegie RN (1881-1909) and 2nd, 8 August 1914 at Holy Trinity, Brompton (Middx), Reginald Henry Dalrymple (1882-1957), but had no issue; died 21 April 1964; will proved 20 August 1964 (estate £34,433).
He lived in west Oxfordshire until he inherited the Angerton estate from his elder brother in 1871.
He died of bronchitis at the Grosvenor Hotel, London, 12 June 1888; his will was proved in November 1888 (effects £54,224). His widow died 30 January 1901; her will was proved 23 April 1901 (estate £9,263).

Atkinson, Maj. Thomas Henry Hollis Bradford (1860-1943). Elder son of Lt-Col. Ralph Atkinson (1823-88) and his wife Amy Emily Sarah, daughter of Lt-Col. Hugh Fitzroy, born 25 September 1860. An officer in the Grenadier Guards, 1880-99 (2nd Lt., 1880; Lt., 1881; Capt., 1892; Maj., 1897; retired 1899); served in the Egyptian campaign, 1882 and fought at Tel-el-Kebir. He was unmarried and without issue.
He inherited the Angerton estate from his father in 1888, but sold it before 1899 and later lived at Melton Mowbray (Leics) and in Chelsea (Middx).
He died 24 May 1943; his will was proved 9 August 1943 (estate £179,401).


Sources


Burke's Landed Gentry, 1850, ii, supplement p. 9; Burke's Landed Gentry, 1898, i, p. 41; E. Mackenzie, An historical, topographical and descriptive view of the county of Northumberland, 1825, vol. 2, p. 161; T. Faulkner & A. Greg, John Dobson: Newcastle architect, 1987, p. 79; Sir N. Pevsner, I. Richmond et al., The buildings of England: Northumberland, 1992, p. 147; T. Faulkner & A. Greg, John Dobson: architect of the north-east, 2001, pp. 167, 172; C. Marsh, Music and society in early modern England, 2010, p. 211; ODNB entry on Lt-Gen. Sir Thomas Bradford.


Location of archives


No significant accumulation is known to survive.


Coat of arms


Ermine, on a fess, double cotised, gules, between three pheons argent, a lion passant or between two roses argent, barbed and seeded proper.


Can you help?


Here are a few notes about information and images which would help to improve the account above. If you can help with any of these or with other additions or corrections, please use the contact form in the sidebar to get in touch.
  • Does anyone know the origin of the Rococo panel in the drawing room at Angerton?
  • Can anyone extend the descent of Angerton Hall after its sale by the executors of Mrs. Straker in 1955?
  • Is anyone able to explain the connection between the Atkinsons of Angerton and the Atkinsons of Lorbottle Hall?

Revision and acknowledgements

This post was first published 15 October 2016 and updated 9 November 2016.

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