30 August 1697|
probably Hampton Court
|Died||25 February 1769
Henry Flitcroft (30 August 1697 – 25 February 1769) was a major English architect in the second generation of Palladianism. He came from a simple background: his father was a labourer in the gardens at Hampton Court and he began as a joiner by trade. Working as a carpenter at Burlington House, he fell from a scaffold and broke his leg. While he was recuperating, the young Lord Burlington noticed his talent with the pencil, and by 1720 Flitcroft was Burlington's draughtsman and general architectural assistant, surveying at Westminster School for Burlington's dormitory, and superintending at the site at Tottenham House. Working life in the inner circle that was driving the new Palladian architecture was an education for Flitcroft.
Flitcroft redrew for publication the drawings for The Designs of Mr. Inigo Jones, published by William Kent in 1727, under Burlington's patronage and supervision. In May 1726 Burlington got his protégé an appointment at the Office of Works, where he worked his way up from Master Carpenter and Master Mason to Comptroller of the King's Works, a prestigious position at the top of the architectural field. No royal commissions came his way, however, except for some works privately for the Duke of Cumberland in Windsor Great Park, but his hands were constantly occupied with private commissions.
Flitcroft, like most professional architects (and unlike virtuoso earls) did some speculative construction in new-building London streets, supplied stone, and contracted to erect the buildings he was designing.
- Lilford Hall, Northamptonshire: 1740s. At Lilford he designed the interiors.
- St Giles in the Fields, London: 1731–34.
- Ditchley House, Oxfordshire: 1724 onwards. At Ditchley he designed interiors, working in harmonious partnership with William Kent.
- Wentworth Woodhouse, W. Riding, Yorkshire: 1735 onwards. He rebuilt and enlarged the west front and added wings.
- St Giles House, Wimborne St Giles, Dorset: 1740–44. Interiors.
- Stowe House, Buckinghamshire: ca. 1742. The State gallery (attributed).
- Wimpole Hall, Cambridgeshire: 1742–45.
- Stourhead, Wiltshire: 1744–65. Garden temples
- Woburn Abbey, Bedfordshire: 1748–61.
- Milton House, Northamptonshire: 1750–51.
West front, Wentworth Woodhouse, the wings were altered later by John Carr
- H.M. Colvin, A Biographical Dictionary of British Architects, 1600-1840 (1997) ISBN 0-300-07207-4
- Heward, John and Taylor, Robert "The Country Houses of Northamptonshire". ISBN 1-873592-21-3