Clifton Hill House

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Clifton Hill House
Clifton Hill House.jpg
Clifton Hill House
Clifton Hill House is located in Bristol
Clifton Hill House
Location within Bristol
General information
Architectural style Palladian
Town or city Bristol
Country England
Coordinates 51°27′12″N 2°36′48″W / 51.453261°N 2.613260°W / 51.453261; -2.613260Coordinates: 51°27′12″N 2°36′48″W / 51.453261°N 2.613260°W / 51.453261; -2.613260
Construction started 1746
Completed 1750
Client Paul Fisher
Technical details
Size 250 student rooms
Design and construction
Architect Isaac Ware

Clifton Hill House is a grade I listed[1] Palladian villa in the Clifton area of Bristol, England which is now used as a hall of residence by the University of Bristol. The Warden is Dr. Thomas Richardson, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Aerospace Engineering at the University.


Clifton Hill House

The house was built between 1746 and 1750 for the wealthy merchant and philanthropist Paul Fisher, by Isaac Ware, a nationally renowned architect and translator of Palladio's works. Thomas Paty, later a notable Bristol architect, worked as a mason during its construction.[2] The house stands on a steep slope, so that while only three stories face the street, the five-bay garden front is four stories tall with low wings (both raised from one story to two during the nineteenth century) and a double flight of steps down to the garden. Original rococo plasterwork, by Joseph Thomas, survives in a number of interior rooms.[3]

The house was later home to the nineteenth century 'man-of-letters', John Addington Symonds, whose father had bought the house in 1851. The university bought the house from the Symonds family in 1909 to create the first hall of residence for women in south-west England.

In 1911, the university bought the adjacent Callandar House, which dates from the late 18th century and is itself grade II listed.[4] It was extended in 1920s thanks to the Wills family (regular benefactors to the university) and, along with Old Clifton, continued to house only female residents. Additional land was acquired and in the early 1960s Fry Wing was constructed on 5 floors ("A" to "E" floors) with South Wing following some 10 years later with its 4 floors ("D" to "G" floors). Clifton Hill House now houses approximately 230 students in total, of both sexes.

The Hall has been used by the BBC as a film location for the The House of Eliott and for episodes of Casualty.[5]


  1. ^ "Clifton Hill House and attached front walls". Images of England. Archived from the original on 2007-11-08. Retrieved 2007-03-14. 
  2. ^ Foyle, Andrew (2004). Bristol (Pevsner Architectural Guides: City Guides). Yale University Press. pp. 214–215. ISBN 978-0300104424. 
  3. ^ Burrough, THB (1970). Bristol. London: Studio Vista. ISBN 0-289-79804-3. 
  4. ^ "Callandar House". Images of England. Retrieved 2007-03-14. 
  5. ^ "History of Clifton Hill House". University of Bristol. Retrieved 2012-12-12. 
  • Walter Ison (1978). The Georgian Buildings of Bristol. Kingsmead Press. ISBN 0-901571-88-1. 
  • Andor Gomme (1979). Bristol: an Architectural History. Lund Humphries. ISBN 0-85331-409-8. 
  • Burnside, Annie (2009). A Palladian Villa in Bristol: Clifton Hill House and the People who Lived There. Redcliffe. ISBN 978-1906593346. 

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