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Pennsylvania Castle Hotel with Attached Walls, Portland

Description: Pennsylvania Castle Hotel with Attached Walls

Grade: II
Date Listed: 16 January 1951
English Heritage Building ID: 381996

OS Grid Reference: SY6959471103
OS Grid Coordinates: 369594, 71103
Latitude/Longitude: 50.5389, -2.4304

Locality: Portland
Local Authority: Weymouth and Portland Borough Council
County: Dorset
Country: England
Postcode: DT5 1BX

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Listing Text


969-1/4/46 (East side)
16/01/51 Pennsylvania Castle Hotel with
attached walls


Large country house, now hotel. Built 1800 for John Penn
(grandson of William Penn, founder of Pennsylvania USA) to
designs of James Wyatt. Squared and coursed Portland stone,
slate roofs with crenellated parapets. Compact long two-storey
rectangle with small projecting corner turrets rising above
centre; to the east (garden) side a large cylindrical tower,
and a one-storey octagonal bay extension, and to S a
crenellated one-storey extension and late C20 flat-roofed
block in two storeys. Various additions on W (road) side.
Gothic-style garden front has set-back 3-bay centre portion
with small square 2-light casements with bars to interlaced
heads above narrow single lancets above paired french doors
with bars and interlacing as over. Late C20 glazed
conservatory full-width between ends conceals ground-floor
glazing. To right a small single light in canted wall
connecting to round tower with 4 windows; 2-light casements in
plat surrounds above paired French doors in similar surrounds.
Plinth, moulded cornice at level of parapet to centre unit.
Left is 2-light casement with bars and interlacing to upper
part, above 3 arched lights in octagonal projection, as those
in round tower. South front has single-storey unit with arched
French doors to E and S, then one and 2-storey late C20
additions. West, road front with various additions includes at
first floor seven 2-light casements with bars as to E front.
Plan is long corridor to E, with circular room, tight
open-well wooden staircase, and extended dining room to left,
and main entrance hall with secondary rooms to right. Stone
4-centred arch fireplace in entrance hall, circular room (bar)
has original cornice and 2 blank semi-circular flat recesses,
good panelled door in architrave to hall. Dining room has good
original cornice, later extended into octagonal bay, an
inserted double pilaster fireplace, and moulded arch to
corridor door. Various original panelled doors at both levels.
An unusual plan form, with no 'grand' staircase, which has
survived well the conversion to modern hotel use. Subsidiary
features: on the north side a plain coped boundary wall c 2m
high extends c 20m north, and is canted in to the square
turret, with a gate opening; from the SW corner a rubble wall
to c 2m curves round to enclose the garden, extending c 45m to
the site boundary, with one simple opening near the N end. The
building is set on a platform facing out to sea, and
immediately above the ruins of the former St. Andrew's Church
(qv). The original owner was Governor of Portland. The castle
also appears, as 'Sylvania Castle' in Hardy's 'The
(Royal Commission on Historical Monuments: Dorset: London:
1970-: 253; Buildings of England: Pevsner N and Newman J:
Dorset: London: 1972-1989: 342).

Listing NGR: SY6956471094

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.