Tag Archives: robert smythson

The first architect? 400 years on from death of Robert Smythson

To be regarded as the first architect is quite an accolade and, in the UK, Robert Smythson is widely viewed as holding this title – but as with many things, this is not quite the whole story.  With competition from others … Continue reading

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The glory of the great hall; Dundarave, Co. Antrim

Where is the centre of a country house? For some it may be a favoured study or library, or a sunlit parlour facing the gardens. Yet, from the time of the earliest large residential buildings, the great hall has often enjoyed … Continue reading

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A minor prodigy: Brereton Hall for sale

Advancement in Elizabethan society depended largely on being noticed by the Queen. In an age where the monarch wielded enormous powers of patronage and with so many others jostling for her attention, your house and the hospitality you could provide … Continue reading

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The future of the country house? Alderbrook Park, Surrey

Within any established pattern there is always the shock of the new. Most people when asked to imagine an English country house will usually think of red-brick Jacobean or light-stone Georgian but the design of new country houses is always … Continue reading

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Developer shows sense; Ruperra Castle for sale

Run-down or derelict country houses are often an enticing prospect for a developer, especially where the house still retains some land, on which they can propose ‘enabling development’.  In theory this is the correct use of this exemption but frequently … Continue reading

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Doddington Hall pyramid proposal

The financial pressures of owning a country house usually mean that the priority always has to be the main building with little left over for the kinds of follies, garden buildings and ‘eye-catchers’ which were a common enhancement in previous centuries. Over … Continue reading

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