The house is best known as the scene of the elopement of Bessie Surtees and John Scott, who later became Lord Chancellor. It was restored in 1930 by SR Vereker, later Lord Gort, who employed an engineer to install 17th century fixtures taken from properties about to be demolished. Newcastle City Council purchased the house in 1978. They leased it to English Heritage in 1989.
In July 2009 it was targeted by graffitivandals who extensively spray-painted the roof with the tags "LG", "GRIM" and "KAME".