New Wardour Castle
|New Wardour Castle|
New Wardour Castle
Location within Wiltshire
|Town or city||Tisbury, Wiltshire|
|Design and construction|
New Wardour Castle is an English country house at Wardour, near Tisbury in Wiltshire, built for the Arundell family. The house is of a Palladian style, designed by the architect James Paine, with additions by Giacomo Quarenghi, who was a principal architect of the Imperial Russian capital city Saint Petersburg.
The building of the house was begun in 1769 and completed in 1776, with additional buildings being added in the 1970s and 1980s. From 1961 to 1990, it was the home of Cranborne Chase School, an independent boarding school for girls.
New Wardour Castle is approximately 1.5 miles (2 km) from Old Wardour Castle, which was left as a landscape feature of the parkland of the new house. This was formerly the home of the Arundell family before it was slighted in the Civil War.
The building is constructed from limestone ashlar with hipped Welsh slate roofs and comprises a square main block with flanking pavilions. The north front has a rusticated basement below a piano nobile, with mezzanine and attic floor over.
The ground floor under the staircase is black and white marble, with exits to the north and south and with sweeping staircases on either side. The stairs can sometimes be fitted with glass uplighter candle lamps and a stair carpet.
The first floor has a wooden floor and also has Roman columns rising to the vaulted ceiling. The surrounding balustrade is made of fine leadwork with flowers covered in gold leaf and is topped by a wooden handrail. Leading off the first floor are four fine alcoves with tall wooden doors.
The ceiling is a high circular dome with a central window decorated with reliefs of musical instruments.
All Saints' Chapel
The Roman Catholic chapel which belonged to, and is integral to, the house, is known as All Saints Chapel, Wardour. It was enlarged by Henry Arundell, 8th Baron Arundell of Wardour, in 1788, to the designs of John Soane. From its beginning, it served the needs of a substantial local recusant community and still has regular Sunday services. Due to its exceptional acoustics, it is also sometimes used for musical events. The ownership of the chapel was transferred to the Wardour Chapel Trust in the late 1890s, and the running costs and maintenance of this exceptional chapel are now funded entirely through voluntary donations.
Parkland and garden
Plans for the grounds were suggested by Richard Woods in 1764, but these proved too expensive and in 1773 were revised by George Ingham. Capability Brown was then brought in and undertook extensive earth moving and tree planting between 1775 and 1783.
The current garden includes a ha-ha, a walled garden with a swimming pool, and a Camellia house. There is a long driveway, which passes the Hexagonal cottage and leads up to the rear of the building and the chapel.
After the death in 1944 of John Francis, 16th and last Lord Arundell of Wardour, the building was rented and became the home of Cranborne Chase School. The school built new classrooms, studio dormitories and a dining-room extension on the south-eastern side of the main house, along with three staff houses to the west.
The school eventually closed in 1990. In 1992 the house along with five cottages, six tennis courts, and a swimming pool in the walled garden, was sold for under £1 million to Nigel Tuersley, and was converted into 10 luxury apartments by designer John Pawson, with Tuersley living in Apartment 1, which occupies the two main floors of the central block. The extensions and accommodation added by the school were mostly demolished.
The building has been designated by English Heritage as a grade I listed building, with its grounds being grade II* listed. It was used in the filming of the television mini-series First Born (1988), and in the filming of Billy Elliot, a movie released in 2000. In 2010 Jasper Conran bought the house, planning to live between this house and Ven House.
- "Wardour Castle Chapel". Images of England. Retrieved 2007-12-29.
- "Camellia House and garden walls, at Wardour Castle". Images of England. Retrieved 2007-12-29.
- "Dairy in Temple Gardens". Images of England. Retrieved 2007-12-29.
- "Wardour Castle". Images of England. Retrieved 2007-12-29.
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