Hadspen House

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Hadspen House
Small building to the left of gateposts surrounded by trees
The entrance to Hadspen House
Hadspen House is located in Somerset
Hadspen House
Location within Somerset
General information
Town or cityPitcombe
CountryEngland
Coordinates51°05′29″N 2°29′27″W / 51.0915°N 2.4908°W / 51.0915; -2.4908Coordinates: 51°05′29″N 2°29′27″W / 51.0915°N 2.4908°W / 51.0915; -2.4908
Completed18th century

Hadspen House of Hadspen, Somerset, England is built of Cary stone, mined from Hadspen Quarry. The stone is a soft limestone known for its deep burnt-orange colour. It is an inferior oolite of the Garantiana Beds and dates to the Middle Jurassic. It has been designated by English Heritage as a grade II* listed building.[1]

House[edit]

Hadspen House is said to have begun as a farmhouse, purchased by the London-lawyer William Player in 1687 on the Hadspen estate,[1 ] Player 'built the forefront of a gentleman's house in Byfleet Close, a barn two stables and ox house.'[2] Player's expansion continued for 10–12 years. It included building walls around a court, adding a service wing, 'a stall for 24 cattle, a farm baliff's house, a brewhouse' and modern plumbing, with a leaded-pipe water supply.[3] Player also begins the garden, planting extensively on both sides of the house and trees, behind, south and north of the house, that included beeches, elms, poplars, ashes and cherries.

Hadspen is noted as Hatch-been on John Ward’s map around 1650.[4] Yet Hadspen House and Hadspen are located on maps as early as 1736, as a gentleman's seat on the eastern edge of Castle Cary Manor.[5] By 1822, Hadspen House and Hadspen are shown as a significant landed estate on C. & J. Greenwood's 1820-21 survey, the Nobility Clergy and Gentry of Somersetshire.[6][7]

Player sold Hadspen House to Vickris Dickinson 60 years later, in 1747. Twenty years later, in 1767 Vickris Dickinson sold it to Charles Medows and then to John Ford. Medows began its expansion and improvement in 1767, which Ford continued.

In 1785 Henry Hobhouse II, Esquire[8] a lawyer and head of the Bristol Bar purchased Hadspen and Hadspen House, significantly expanding the Hohhouse land ownership in Somersetshire and establishing the Hobhouse family seat. 'The Hobhouses were Bristol merchants who had recently established themselves as country gentlemen.'[9] Henry Hobhouse I and his brother Isaac made their fortune as Bristol merchants in the sugar and tobacco trades between Bristol, Africa, the West Indies and Virginia in the early- and mid-18th century.[10]

At the time of purchase in 1785 the Hadspen estate comprised 717 acres. Hadspen House was ‘a modern stone-built House of Six rooms on a floor with marble chimney-pieces, stabling for 20 horses, a good garden and extensive woodland.'[11] In 1786 and 1786 Henry Hobhouse II continued to expand the house and the furnishings. His alterations in 1786-87 include 'raising the ceilings of the front rooms, adding a new dining room to the north-east, three reception rooms, the drawing and library rooms and reroofing the house in grey Welsh slate.[12] His alterations created Hadspen House into an the grandeur of the 18th century Georgian manor house for which it is known today.

Major alterations to the rear were made by his heir, the Right Honorable Henry Hobhouse, in 1828. His son Henry, a land owner again made major alterations to the rear in 1886, as did his son Sir Arthur Lawrence, liberal politician and architect of national parks of England and Wales, in 1909.

Within the original grounds are a coachhouse,[13] cottage,[14] granary,[15] southwest lodge,[16] stables[17] summerhouse[18] and a number of modern follies.[19] The clock house barn was converted into a five-bedroom dwelling in 2000.[20]

Landscape garden[edit]

In the early 18th century William Player created gardens a la française with geometric plantings with courts, fountains and three axes in the 300-acres surrounding the house. At the height of the landscape garden movement Henry Hobhouse Esquire had Player’s strict geometry cut with picturesque vistas and rolling hills. In the 1960s Penelope Hobhouse transformed the walled parabola vegetable garden, planting within and around it a 20th century Arts and Crafts garden.[21] It opened to visitors in 1970 and is published in Penelope Hobhouse’s 1976 publication The Country Gardener.

In 1987 the garden was leased to Canadian gardeners and authors Nori and Sandra Pope. In 2007 Niall Hobhouse sponsored a competition for its redesign.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Hadspen House". historicengland.org.uk. Retrieved 24 November 2007.
  2. ^ Robinson, John Martin (1996). "Hadspen House, Somerset: The Seat of Mr Niall Hobhouse". Country Life: 73–74.
  3. ^ Robinson, John Martin (1996). "Hadspen House, Somerset: The Seat of Mr Niall Hobhouse". Country Life: 74.
  4. ^ Ward, John (c. 1650). An accurate map of the mannor of Castle Cary, wherein is described the roades, rivers, ponds, footepaths, etc., thereto belonging, by John Ward, teacher of the mathematicks, at William Sare's house, in Ratcliffe, merchant;" drawn about the year 1650, on vellum. British Library Maps room.
  5. ^ Strachey, J. (1736). Somsert survey 1736, 2 sheets, 1/2" to 1 mile. British Library Maps room.
  6. ^ Greenwood, C. & J. (1822). the Nobility Clergy and Gentry of Somersetshire, 1820-21 Survey, 6 sheets, 1" to 1 mile. British Library Maps room: G. Pringle, SJ. Neele & Son, Engr.
  7. ^ Rodger, compiled by, Elizabeth M (1972). The Large Scale County Maps of the British Isles 1596-1850: A Union List, second edition. Oxford: Bodleian Library Oxford. p. 21.
  8. ^ Burke, John (1838). A Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Commoners of Great Britain. p. 360.
  9. ^ Robinson, John Martin (1996). "Hadspen House, Somerset: The Seat of Mr Niall Hobhouse". Country Life: 72–75.
  10. ^ Robinson, John Martin (1996). "Hadspen House, Somerset: The Seat of Mr Niall Hobhouse". Country Life: 72.
  11. ^ Robinson, John Martin (1996). "Hadspen House, Somerest: The Seat of Mr Niall Hobhouse". Country Life: 73.
  12. ^ Robinson, John Martin (1996). "Hadspen House, Somerset: The Seat of Mr Niall Hobhouse". Country Life: 75.
  13. ^ "Coach House, 30 metres West North West of Hadspen House". historicengland.org.uk. Retrieved 24 November 2007.
  14. ^ "Cottage, 25 metres North of Hadspen House". historicengland.org.uk. Retrieved 24 November 2007.
  15. ^ "Granary, 40 metres North West of Hadspen House". historicengland.org.uk. Retrieved 24 November 2007.
  16. ^ "South West Lodge to Hadspen House". historicengland.org.uk. Retrieved 24 November 2007.
  17. ^ "Stables and Byre adjoining, about 40 metres West of Hadspen House". historicengland.org.uk. Retrieved 24 November 2007.
  18. ^ "Summerhouse, about 70 metres East of Hadspen House". historicengland.org.uk. Retrieved 24 November 2007.
  19. ^ Glancey, Jonathan (12 August 2002). "Noble Folly". The Guardian. Retrieved 24 November 2007.
  20. ^ "Clock House". Rightmove. Retrieved 24 November 2007.
  21. ^ Donald, Caroline (30 March 2008). "Gardening guru Penelope Hobhouse sells her Dorset house and garden". The Sunday Times. Retrieved 5 May 2017.