Harewood House

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Harewood House
Harewood House, seen from the garden.JPG
Type Stately Home
Proprietor Harewood House Trust
Main feature Grade I listed House
Other features Landscaped gardens
Public access Yes
Country England
Region Yorkshire and the Humber
Address Harewood House, Harewood, Leeds
Postcode LS17 9LG
Refreshments Yes
Parking Yes
Shop Yes
Website www.harewood.org

Harewood House (/ˈhɑːwʊd/ HAR-wood) or (/ˈhɛərwʊd/ HAIR-wood) is a country house located in Harewood near Leeds, West Yorkshire, England. Designed by the architects John Carr and Robert Adam, it was built from 1759 to 1771 for wealthy trader Edwin Lascelles, 1st Baron Harewood.

Still home to the Lascelles family, Harewood House is a member of Treasure Houses of England, a marketing consortium for ten of the foremost historic homes in England. The house itself is a Grade I listed building; there are a number of features in the grounds and courtyard that have been listed as Grade I, II and II*.


The house was built from 1759 to 1771 for Edwin Lascelles, whose family had bought the estate after making its fortune in the West Indies through Customs positions, slave trading and lending money to planters. The house was designed by the architects John Carr and Robert Adam.

Much of the furniture is by the eighteenth-century English furniture designer Thomas Chippendale, who came from nearby Otley.

Lancelot "Capability" Brown designed the grounds to which Sir Charles Barry added a grand terrace, in 1844.[1]

Artists Thomas Girtin and JMW Turner stayed at the house many times, painting the house itself and also the surrounding countryside and landmarks, such as the nearby Plumpton Rocks which at the time was owned by the Harewood Estate.[2]

Harewood House has a long history of hosting visitors interested in its imposing architecture and collections of paintings. The first guidebook to the home was published early in the nineteenth century.

The house served as a convalescent hospital during both the First and Second World Wars.

The archives of the Lascelles family and the Harewood estate are held at West Yorkshire Archive Service.[3] in Leeds.

Harewood House from A Complete History of the County of York by Thomas Allen (1828–30), showing the house before Barry altered the facades and added an extra storey to the pavilions.

Since 1996, part of the estate has been used as the village in the ITV soap opera Emmerdale, which had been based in two different Yorkshire villages since its inception 24 years earlier.[4]

State rooms[edit]

  • Ante Room
  • Below Stairs
  • China Room
  • Cinnamon Drawing Room
  • Dining Room
  • East Bedroom
  • Gallery
  • HRH Princess Mary Display Room
  • Princess Mary's Dressing Room
  • Lord Harewood's Sitting Room
  • Music Room
  • Old Kitchen
  • Old Library
  • Pastry Room
  • Servants Database
  • Servants' Hall
  • Spanish Library
  • State Bedroom
  • Steward's Room
  • Still Room
  • Terrace Gallery
  • The Library
  • Vegetable Scullery
  • Watercolour Rooms
  • Yellow Drawing Room


Portrait of Mrs. John Hale by Sir Joshua Reynolds, 1762-1764

The house is still the family seat of the Lascelles family. David Lascelles is the eighth Earl. His grandmother was Mary, Princess Royal, daughter of King George V and Queen Mary. She also lived at the house and died there in 1965.[5]

The House and Grounds have been transferred into a trust ownership structure, and as a result are managed by Harewood House Trust and are open to the public most of the year. Harewood won a Large Visitor Attraction of the Year award in the 2009 national Excellence in England awards[6] and remains a popular Yorkshire tourist attraction.

Today Harewood houses a collection of paintings by masters of the Italian Renaissance, family portraits by Reynolds, Hoppner and Lawrence, and modern art collected by the 7th Earl and Countess. Changing temporary exhibitions are held each season in the Terrace Gallery. Catering facilities in the House include Michelin-starred fine dining.[7]

As well as tours of the house and grounds, Harewood has over 100 acres of award-winning[according to whom?] gardens, including a Himalayan Garden and its stupa, an educational bird garden, an adventure playground and historic All Saints Church with its alabaster tombs. From May 2007 to October 2008 the grounds also contained Yorkshire's first planetarium, the Yorkshire Planetarium.[citation needed]

The Leeds Country Way passes through the Harewood Estate, to the south of the house and lake, as does the route of The White Rose Way.

Harewood Bird Garden
Location Harewood House, Leeds, West Yorkshire, England
Memberships BIAZA,[8] EAZA[9]
Website www.harewood.org/grounds/grounds-bird-garden

Harewood Bird Garden[edit]

The Bird Garden at Harewood House has a collection of exotic species of birds, of which more than 30 are listed as vulnerable or endangered in the IUCN listings. Harewood Bird Garden is a full member of both the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA) and the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria (EAZA).

Some of the birds that can be seen in the garden are Humboldt Penguins, Chilean Flamingo, Duyvenbode's lory, Macaws, Rainbow Lorikeets and Snow Goose.

Pronunciation of 'Harewood'[edit]

There is often debate as to the exact pronunciation of the word 'Harewood'. In the eighteenth century, the customary pronunciation (and spelling) was Harwood[1] and this pronunciation for both house and title is still used by Harewood House and the Earl of Harewood. The pronunciation Hairwood is generally used for the village, and also sometimes used for the house and title.



  1. ^ a b Mauchline, M. (1992) Harewood House. One of the Treasure Houses of Britain. Asbourne: Moorland Publishing Co Ltd.
  2. ^ Oxford Dictionary of National Biography
  3. ^ Archives.wyjs.org.uk
  4. ^ IMDb.com
  5. ^ Harewood.org
  6. ^ Harewood House website. Harewood Card Newsletter. Autumn/Winter 2003-04 Harewood.org. Retrieved 1 December 2006.
  7. ^ "Michelin star restaurant moves into stately home to offer tasty posh nosh", Yorkshire Evening Post. Retrieved 2 August 2013
  8. ^ "BIAZA Zoos and Aquariums". biaza.org.uk. BIAZA. Retrieved 26 July 2012. 
  9. ^ "EAZA Member Zoos & Aquariums". eaza.net. EAZA. Retrieved 26 July 2012. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°53′48″N 1°31′42″W / 53.89667°N 1.52833°W / 53.89667; -1.52833