Culford Hall, Suffolk
|Culford Hall: the house as remodelled by Samuel Wyatt in 1790-96, set in a landscape by Humphry Repton.|
|Culford Hall: engraving from Neale's Views of Seats, 1818, showing the bow on the north front and the semi-circular portico added by George Wyatt, 1806-08.|
|Culford Hall: the south front with the colonnade of 1828, photographed c.1890.|
Image: Bury St Edmunds Past & Present Society, Spanton-Jarman Collection.
|Culford Hall: south front after the additions of 1894-96. Image: Historic England [BB81/2406]|
|Culford Hall: the north front as it is today, remodelled by William Young in 1894-96.|
|Culford Hall: the winter garden built in 1904 and now demolished. Image: Historic England [BB81/131]|
|Culford Hall: the entrance hall, with the frieze believed to come from Caversham Court and attributed to Pellegrini.|
After the death of the 6th Earl Cadogan in 1933, the 11,000 acre estate was broken up, and the Hall was purchased as new premises for the East Anglian School for Boys (now Culford Hall School). Additional buildings for the school have largely been kept away from the main house, except for the regrettable Centenary Hall, which replaced Wyatt's service wing in 1980. A new headmaster's house was built in 1936, and the Wyatt dining room chimneypiece, which has three inset Wedgwood plaques, was taken there from the main house.
Shrubland Hall, Suffolk
The first house on the estate of which anything is known was built in the early 16th century for Sir Philip Bothe alias Booth (d. 1539), and was drawn by Humphry Repton when he made proposals for the improvement of the park in 1789. Repton shows a rambling, partly semi-timbered gabled house, with a two-storey porch that has distinctive flushwork decoration on its ground floor.
|Shrubland Hall: the view of the old hall by Humphry Repton, 1789.|
Image: Suffolk Archives HA93/14688/3
|Old Shrubland Hall: terracotta window, c.1525|
Image: Nicholas Kingsley. Some rights reserved.
|Old Shrubland Hall: detail of terracotta window.|
Image: Nicholas Kingsley. Some rights reserved.
A modest and fairly plain new house was built at Shrubland in 1769-72 to the designs of James Paine for the Rev. John Bacon, on a different site at the far end of the park from the Old Hall which commanded fine views across the Gipping valley and south towards Ipswich.
|Shrubland Hall: James Paine's design for the new house, published in Paine's Plans, Elevations and Sections of Noblemen and Gentlemen's Houses, vol. ii, 1783.|
It consisted of a five bay central block of one a half storeys above a rusticated basement, with a shallow three-bay pediment supported on Ionic pilasters. The main block was linked to lower three-bay service wings with pyramidal roofs and central chimneystacks by quadrant corridors. Although externally so plain, the interior was richly finished with elaborate neo-classical ceilings in the main rooms. At the same time as he was working at Shrubland, Paine was commissioned to remodel Moor Park in Surrey for John Bacon's brother Basil, who had inherited the estate in 1770, and not to be outdone, the third brother, the Rev. Nicholas Bacon, rebuilt the vicarage at Coddenham (now Coddenham House) in 1771: it seems very likely that Paine was his architect too.
On the death of John Bacon at the beginning of 1788 his property passed to his younger brother, the Rev. Nicholas Bacon, who promptly sold the Shrubland estate to Sir William Fowle Middleton (1748-1829), 1st bt., of Crowfield (Suffk). Middleton employed Humphry Repton to improve the park from 1789 onwards, and also replaced Paine's quadrant service wings with two-storey wings with canted bays on the ends in about 1808. More substantial changes were to follow, however, for after the house was inherited by Sir William Fowle Middleton (1784-1860), 2nd bt., he brought in J.P. Gandy-Deering in 1831-33 and later Alexander Roos in c.1838-45, who greatly expanded and redecorated the house. The main entrance was moved from the ground floor on the west side to the first floor on the east side, with the addition of a grand stair to the front door. The west front was extended at both ends by the addition of pavilions beyond the early 19th century wings, and its ground floor was then masked by the addition of a terrace, with a grotto-like entrance in the centre. A seven-bay conservatory with Tuscan pilasters was added to the south front.
|Shrubland Hall: engraving of the house in the 1840s, after the works by Gandy-Deering and Roos.|
Finally, after 1848, Sir Charles Barry was brought in and turned the house into an Italianate palazzo, albeit without wholesale rebuilding. His main addition was to turn the south-west pavilion of the house into an Italianate belvedere tower, but he also replaced Paine's pediments with balustrades and gave the north pavilion of the house a largely rusticated exterior. On the east side of the house he built a massive stone portico, complete with balustrade and Tuscan columns banded with rustication, and possessing its own single-storey wings with arched windows. To complement this grand new entrance, he laid out the entrance courtyard with curved walls and elaborate wrought-iron gates.
|Shrubland Hall: entrance front in 2007. Image: Andrew Hill. Some rights reserved.|
|Shrubland Hall: garden front from the south-west in 2004. Image: Nicholas Kingsley. Some rights reserved.|
Inside the house, the wings either side of Barry's entrance hall are richly decorated sculpture galleries with alcoves at each end. The hall leads into a straight staircase, probably designed by Roos, with solid walls and a shallow, coffered, segmental vault. This leads onto a suite of three rooms along the west front which preserve their original Paine plaster ceilings. The fourth principal room (the original drawing room) was truncated to allow for a new corridor that runs north-to-south through the extended house, but which is rather narrow and mean for the grandeur of the rest of the interior. Beyond the drawing room Gandy-Deering or Roos added a gallery (now the Library) with elaborate plasterwork and Corinthian columns, and with a boudoir beyond it opening into the conservatory on the south front. In the opposite direction, to the north, there is an austerely classical dining room and beyond it, in the north pavilion, a suite of bedrooms that includes a room with painted Chinoiserie decoration and another with a tented ceiling. In the basement, Paine's vaulted corridors and Oval Hall survive, with delicate plaster ceilings. His top floor is also largely unaltered, with a central, top-lit circular lobby. It comprised three apartments and a single bedroom: further bedrooms for servants and visitors were in the pavilions.
Humphry Repton's landscape, laid out from 1789 onwards, was one of his earliest commissions and his first job in Suffolk. It was he who recommended preserving the Old Hall as a picturesque object when Middleton had intended to pull it down, and who created a new approach to the house from the south. Much of his scheme has, however, been overlain by later works: first the Fountain Garden, Maze and Swiss Garden (which had the earliest authentic Alpine chalet in England, erected before 1840) created c.1841 by Alexander Roos and Donald Beaton, and then by Barry's axial Italianate landscape cascading down the hillside to the west of the house, which was completed by 1855. The gardens of the two different periods are quite distinct, but are linked together by the Green Terrace, nearly half a mile long.
|Shrubland Hall: The Descent from the terraces to the Panel Garden, designed by Sir Charles Barry, c.1848-55.|
Image: Nicholas Kingsley. Some rights reserved.
Outside the west front, Barry created a second terrace below Gandy-Deering's, with a central flight of steps leading down to the Balcony Garden of 1850-53, which has balustrades on three sides and recesses in the corners. In the middle of the west side is a stone pavilion in the form of a triumphal arch, adorned with an open pediment, female figures, festoons etc., which gives access to The Descent, four straight flights of steps (over 100 in all) terminating in a balcony over a grotto and then dividing. The concept for the garden is inspired by the gardens of the Villa d'Este at Tivoli, and was suggested by Lady Middleton. Once it was completed, work began on the Lower or Panel Garden, where there is a further three-bay arcade on Tuscan columns, with arches at either end with Corinthian columns.
Shrubland Hall passed to the de Saumarez family in the 1880s and was their home until the 1960s, when the 6th Baron opened the house as a health clinic. The family's furniture and collections remained in the house until 2006, when the clinic closed and the contents of the house were sold. In 2010, the estate was sold in 42 lots, with the house being bought by Dr. Muhammed Farmer, whose various business interests, including the British Institute of Technology & E-commerce and Shrubland Royale Hotel have briefly occupied the building. Since the hotel closed in 2015 the house has apparently been unused and the condition of the house and grounds are now the subject of concern.
Descent: Sir Philip Bothe (d. 1539)... Thomas Little or Litton (d. by c.1592); to daughter, Helen (d. 1646), wife of Sir Edward Bacon (1548-1618); to son, Nicholas Bacon (1589-1658); to son, Sir Nicholas Bacon (1623-87), kt.; to son, Nicholas Bacon (1658-97); to son, Nicholas Bacon (1686-1767); to son, Rev. John Bacon (1715-88); to brother, Rev. Nicholas Bacon (1732-95), who sold 1788 to Sir William Fowle Middleton (1748-1829), 1st bt.; to son, Sir William Fowle Middleton (1784-1860), 2nd bt.; to cousin, Sir George Nathaniel Broke-Middleton (1812-87), 3rd bt.; to niece, Jane Anne Broke, wife of James St. Vincent Saumarez (1843-1937), 4th Baron de Saumarez; to son, James St. Vincent Broke Saumarez (1889-1969), 5th Baron de Saumarez; to son, James Victor Broke Saumarez (1924-91), 6th Baron de Saumarez; to son, Eric Douglas Saumarez (b. 1956), 7th Baron de Saumarez, who sold 2010 to Dr. Muhammed Farmer.
Gillingham Hall, Norfolk
|Gillingham Hall: the entrance front c.1910. Image: Charles Hind Postcard Collection.|
|Gillingham Hall: a watercolour by John Varley c.1810, showing the rear elevation and the tall prospect tower. Image: Sotheby's.|
In the next generation, John Bacon Schutz (1756-90) died young, leaving a widow and one daughter. His widow was responsible for improvements to the park, bringing in a young John Claudius Loudon (1783-1843), who made two alternative proposals for improvements in 1812. Mrs. Schutz eventually carried out a scheme involving elements of both proposals, moving roads to expand the park, planting shelter belts and creating a fine lawn in front of the house, where previously it had been crowded in by walls and elaborate wrought iron gates. Mrs. Schutz also brought in the artist John Varley, who came as drawing tutor to her daughter, Harriet (who became a very competent artist in her own right). But while he was at Gillingham, he made a drawing of the rear of the hall, which shows the tall tower rising above a garden in which Mrs Schutz and her daughter are taking the air.
|Gillingham Hall: the house from the south, showing the mid 18th century additions to the house and the new domed conservatory built in 2008. Image: Ray McCleery.|
Earlham Hall, Norfolk
|Earlham Hall: north front, 1935. Image: George Plunkett. Some rights reserved.|
|Earlham Hall: west front, 1937. Image: George Plunkett.|
Some rights reserved.
|Earlham Hall: the south front in 1819.|
|Earlham Hall: the south front in 1937. Image: George Plunkett. Some rights reserved.|
Descent: Robert Houghton (fl. 1642); sold 1657 to Thomas Waller; to daughter, Elizabeth, wife of Francis Bacon (d. 1679); to son, Waller Bacon (c.1669-1734); to son, Edward Bacon (1712-86); to widow, Elizabeth Bacon (d. 1793); to Bacon Frank (d. 1812) of Campsall Hall (Yorks WR); to son, Edward Frank; to son, Richard Bacon Frank (d. 1832); to son, Frederick Bacon Frank (1827-1911); to widow, Mary Bacon Frank, who sold 1924 to Norwich City Council; leased 1963 and sold 2010 to University of East Anglia. The house was let to the Gurney family of Quaker bankers from 1793-1912.
Garboldisham Old Hall, Norfolk
In 1627, Thomas Howard, 14th Earl of Arundel, sold the demesne lands of Garboldisham away from the manor to Framlingham Gawdy, and it was probably he who built a new house called Garboldisham Hall (later Old Hall) in the 1620s. The new house was much altered in the 18th century and its original appearance does not seem to be recorded, but it was probably a fairly standard C- or E-plan two-storey manor house with long projecting wings, as its later appearance suggests.
|Garboldisham Hall: the entrance front in 1926. Image: Historic England AA56/2699.|
|Garboldisham Hall: the entrance hall in 1926. Image: Historic England AA56/2710|
|Garboldisham Hall: the staircase in 1926. Image: Historic England AA56/2712|
In the late 1860s, Cecil Thomas Molineux-Montgomery (1846-1900) made an advantageous marriage to Eleanour Lascelles of Harewood House (Yorks WR), and the young couple built a new house (known as Garboldisham Manor), on a nearby site, to the designs of George Gilbert Scott jr. Almost as soon as they have moved to the new house, the family's income from their estates in St Kitts and Norfolk went into steep decline, due to increased labour costs in the plantations and the Agricultural Depression at home, and they were forced to move back to the Old Hall; the new Manor was then let and later sold (it was demolished in about 1955). The Old Hall continued to be the family home until Sybil Molineux-Montgomerie died in 1932. Her only daughter, Rosemary (d. 1979), sold the house in 1934 with about 100 acres, but retained the rest of the 2,000-acre estate until 1944.
|Garboldisham Hall: the drawing after redecoration in the early 1930s. Image: Country Life.|
|Garboldisham Hall: the side elevation of the house after the fire in 1955. Image: Historic England AA56/94.|
Descent: Thomas Howard (1585-1646), 14th Earl of Arundel; sold 1627 to Framlingham Gawdy (1589-1654); to son, Sir William Gawdy (1612-69), 1st bt.; ... sold 1702 to Sir Robert Bacon (d. 1704), 5th bt.; to son, Sir Edmund Bacon (d. 1755), 6th bt.; to daughter, Letitia, wife of Sir Ayrmine Wodehouse, who sold c.1756 to Crisp Molineux (1730-92); to son, George Molineux-Montgomerie (1759-1803); to son, Crisp Molineux-Montgomerie (1780-1850); to brother, Thomas Molineux-Montgomerie (1788-1855); to son, Cecil Thomas Molineux-Montgomerie (1846-1900); to son, Maj. George Frederick Crisp Molineux-Montgomerie (1869-1915); to widow, Sybil Mary Blanche Molineux-Montgomerie (d. 1932); to daughter, Rosemary Heartsease Beare Molineux-Montgomerie (fl. 1941), who sold 1934 to C.W. Woodall; sold 1936 to Lancelot Gray Hugh Smith (d. 1941); to nephew, Esmond Charles Baring (1914-63); sold 1947 to P.J. Borthwick; sold 1951 to Dr R. McCurdy; burnt 1954 and demolished 1955.
Raveningham Hall, Norfolk
The Castell family acquired the manor of Raveningham (Norfolk) in 1225 and held it until the mid 18th century. Their first home seems to have been a well-preserved moated site to the south-west of the present house, where there is still a water-filled moat, crossed by a 19th century bridge to a central island which now supports some 19th century cottages. The house within the moat may have been rebuilt several times, but nothing is known of its appearance.
|Raveningham Hall: OS 6" map of 1884, showing the relationship of the old and new halls.|
|Raveningham Hall: south front of c.1775, with portico, dormers and oculus window added in 1905 by Somers Clark.|
|Raveningham Hall: the north front of c.1775, with the ground floor brought forward and one-bay wings added by Somers Clark, 1905. Image: © Raymond Thurlby; stock photo at Pictures of England.com.|
Thonock Hall, LincolnshireThe Thonock estate was acquired by Sir Willoughby Hickman (d. 1720), 3rd bt., sometime around 1700, and he moved from the ancient Old Hall in Gainsborough (where his family had lived since 1586) to what was presumably a more up-to-date house at Thonock. Some elements of this building may have been preserved among the gabled outbuildings of a new seven by five bay house of two-and-a-half storeys, built c.1760-70 for his grandson, Sir Neville George Hickman (d. 1781), 5th bt. The panelled interiors of this house seem to have survived relatively unaltered until the house was demolished.
|Thonock Hall: the east front of c.1760 survived almost unaltered until it was demolished in 1964.|
|Thonock Hall: panelled interior of c.1760. Image: Historic England.|
|Thonock Hall: the room at the south-east corner of the house, redecorated in the 19th century when the bay window was added. Image: Historic England.|
|Thonock Hall: the south and east sides of the house, as altered c.1830. Image: Historic England|
Descent: sold c.1700 to Sir Willoughby Hickman (1659-1720), 3rd bt.; to son, Sir Neville Hickman (1701-33), 4th bt.; to son, Sir Neville George Hickman (1725-81), 5th bt.; to daughter, Frances Hickman (d. 1826); to kinsman, Henry Bacon; to brother, Sir Edmund Bacon (1779-1864), 9th/10th bt.; to nephew, Sir Henry Hickman Bacon (1820-72), 10th/11th bt.; to son, Sir Hickman Beckett Bacon (1855-1945), 11th/12th bt.; to nephew, Sir Edmund Castell Bacon (1903-82), 13th/14th bt., who demolished the house, 1964.
Burke's Peerage and Baronetage, 2003, pp. 209-11; J.C. Rogers, 'The manor and houses of Gorhambury', Transactions of St Albans & Hertfordshire Architectural and Archaeological Society, 1933, pp. 35-112; Ernest Sandeen, 'The building of Redgrave Hall, 1545-1554', Proceedings of the Suffolk Institute of Archaeology, 1961, pp. 1-31; R. Tittler, Nicholas Bacon: the making of a Tudor statesman, 1976; M. Airs, 'The designing of five East Anglian country houses, 1505-1637', Architectural History, 1978, pp. 58-68; P. Leach, James Paine, 1988, pp. 33, 202, 209-10; Sir N. Pevsner & B. Wilson, The buildings of England: Norfolk - Norwich and North-East, 2nd edn., 1997, pp. 344-45, 675-77; T. Williamson, Suffolk's gardens and parks, 2000, pp. 22, 59-60, 81-82; H. Smith, 'Concept and compromise: Sir Nicholas Bacon and the building of Stiffkey Hall', in C. Harper-Bill, C. Rawcliffe & R.G. Wilson, East Anglia's History: studies in honour of Norman Scarfe, 2002, pp. 159-88; D. Clarke, The country houses of Norfolk: part 1 - The Major Houses, 2006, pp. 90-91; Diarmaid MacCulloch (ed), Letters from Redgrave Hall: The Bacon Family, 1340-1744, 2007; W.M. Roberts, Lost country houses of Suffolk, 2010, pp. 125-29; P. Dallas, R. Last & T. Williamson, Norfolk Gardens and Designed Landscapes, 2013, pp. 378-81; H.L. Meakin, The painted closet of Lady Anne Bacon Drury, 2013, esp. pp. 19-102; University of East Anglia, Ziggurat, 2014/15, pp. 23-26; J. Bettley & Sir N. Pevsner, The buildings of England: Suffolk - West, 2015, pp. 464-66; ODNB articles on Anne, Lady Bacon (d. 1610); Anthony Bacon (d. 1601); Sir Edmund Castell Bacon, 13th/14th bt.; Edward Bacon (1548-1618); Francis Bacon, Viscount St. Alban; Sir Nicholas Bacon (1510-79); Sir Nicholas Bacon (c.1543-1624); http://myweb.tiscali.co.uk/redgravehistory/redgravepark.htm; https://parksandgardensuk.wordpress.com/2016/09/17/sir-nathaniel-bacon-his-kitchen-garden-and-his-cookmaid/; http://hbsmrgateway2.esdm.co.uk/norfolk/DataFiles/Docs/AssocDoc35778.pdf.