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Description: Prestwold Hall
Date Listed: 9 July 1951
English Heritage Building ID: 189312
OS Grid Reference: SK5791921470
OS Grid Coordinates: 457919, 321470
Latitude/Longitude: 52.7877, -1.1426
Explore more of the area around Prestwold, Leicestershire at Explore Britain.
SK 52 SE PRESTWOLD PRESTWOLD HALL
1/54 Prestwold Hall
Hall, now largely as remodelled by William Burn in 1842-4 but incorporating
a mid C18 H-plan house which influenced Burn's plan and choice of style,
and possibly fragments of something earlier still. Prestwold is of interest
as one of Burn's earlier English commissions, and one of his few houses in
a classical style. All that is now visible is his work, in an elegantly
wrought classical. The earlier brick house has been replaced and extended
using Ancaster stone, ashlar throughout with angle quoins, sill courses
and a modillion eaves cornice with balustraded parapets. The entrance (west)
front is 3 storeys, 3-3-3, with the central bays recessed. In the centre
is a projecting porte cochere, Roman Doric with 4 columns, triglyph frieze
and cornice. Beneath this a doorway and pair of flanking windows with moulded
stone aprons, all with semi circular arched heads. The central 1st floor
windows of the projecting outer bays have pediments supported on consoles,
and the ground floor windows have consoles supporting sills, and moulded
aprons. All windows are sashes in shouldered architraves. To the left,
a Doric collonade leads to the return wall of the stable yard and its entrance,
ashlar, a shallow arch with projecting keystone, cornice and balustraded
parapet above. The flanking wall is relieved by projecting pilasters, and
a plain frieze and cornice.
Garden front, 3 storeys, 2-3-3-3. Sash windows with shouldered architraves.
Outer 3 bays have full height segmental arched windows to ground floor.
A conservatory fills the recessed central 3 bays, and projects slightly.
Glass between elegant Doric pilasters, a cornice breaking forward over each
one. Glass and iron roof. The central 1st floor window above has a pediment
supported on consoles. 2nd floor windows are all on consoles.
East front was a completely new addition by Burn. 1 bay of ashlar with
tripartite windows to each floor, full height on ground floor, and then 4
bays of painted brickwork with stone architraves to windows, solid parapet
and panelled ashlar chimneys flush with wall face.
Internally, the finest room is the entrance hall with richly coloured marble
walls and coffered ceiling painted in imitation-of Raphael's Vatican groteques,
with arabesques etc., and incorporating miniature landscapes showing the
house before and after restoration. Below are small medallion busts of
the poets. An arcade opens on to a vaulted corridor leading to a top lit
inner hall, these spaces also marbled. Other rooms include the library,
drawing room and dining room, which all have plaster cornices, light plaster
panelled ceilings, fine doorcases, and marble fireplaces. Doors and bookcases
in library, 1875, Gillows. The cantilevered stone staircase survives from
the C18 house, given its bracketted brass balusters by Wilkins, c1805. There
is much concealed use of constructional cast iron in the house, for instance
to support the lantern of the inner hall.
To the rear (North) of the house the service wing extends, forming one range
of the stable courtyard. By Burn, who was noted for his skilfull planning
and arrangements for the discreet and efficient,servicing of country houses,
extended c1890. 2 storeys. Brick with slate roofs. Various doors and
window openings with gauged brick heads, some altered.
See: Mark Girouard: The Victorian Country hose, 1975 pp138-42
Country Life, April 1959 pp828, 890, 948.
Listing NGR: SK5791921470
This text is a legacy record and has not been updated since the building was originally listed. Details of the building may have changed in the intervening time. You should not rely on this listing as an accurate description of the building.
Source: English Heritage
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.