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Description: Grey Towers House (Poole Hospital) and Attached Wall
Date Listed: 28 July 1988
English Heritage Building ID: 59832
OS Grid Reference: NZ5362813392
OS Grid Coordinates: 453628, 513392
Latitude/Longitude: 54.5130, -1.1732
The following entry:-
NUNTHORPE STOKESLEY ROAD
NZ 51 SW west side (off)
6/112 Grey Towers House,
(Poole Hospital) and
shall be upgraded to Grade II* (star) and amended by the addition of the following text:-
This house was built for W R I Hopkins, ironmaster, who in 1873-4 employed the London
interior decorators Collinson & Lock to produce interiors designed by the architect E W Godwin.
These interiors were in the revolutionary Aesthetic style, and though much ofthis scheme has been
covered over in later years recent research has proved that much of it still survives today under
these later alterations. Most of this decoration consisted of hand stencilled paper in soft pastel
colours with simple decorative motifs much influenced by Japanese design. The entrance hall,
which is now partly panelled, retains rose pink paper walls with leaf and rose decoration, plus a
darker dado with diamond pattern frieze. The staircase hall has fragments of its original paper
decoration under the dado rail which has now been removed, this was partly cream with a green
and russet lattice pattern with roundels and also pink with 'shishi' motifs, plus a naturalistic frieze.
The drawing room and attached ante room, which are now partly panelled, have beige walls
covered with a gold lattice pattern of roundels filled with peacocks, a motif much used in Aesthetic
decoration. The dining room has fragments of the original pink paper with painted lines to the
perimeter of the wall above and below the dado decorated with a cockerel's comb motif. The
library and breakfast/morning room retains fragments of the original pale blue paper with single
stencilled flower dado and botanical frieze. Upstairs, the boudoir has sage grey walls with painted
lines to the perimeter of the wall and a pink dado with Japanese flower frieze. The bedrooms to
the west have similar decoration with various patterned friezes. The tower room over the entrance
hall has fragment of another gilded decorative scheme. Though often very fragmentary this is by
far the best preserved internal decorative scheme designed by the famous Victorian architect E W
Godwin. This house has been extensively vandalised and many of the interior fittings have been
removed, it has also suffered a small fire in the summer of 1994.
NUNTHORPE STOKESLEY ROAD,
NZ 51 SW (5313)
west side (off).
6/112 Grey Towers House,
(Poole Hospital) and
Country house, 1865-67 by John Ross (Darlington), for W.R.I. Hopkins.
Converted to sanatorium 1932; now residence for hospital staff. Squared
random ironstone rubble, with sandstone quoins and dressings. Lakeland
slate roofs. High Victorian Gothic style. 2 storeys and attic storey.
Asymmetrical 6-bay east entrance front, with slightly-projecting gabled
right end bay and projecting tower in 3rd bay with projecting one-storey
open porch. Porch has chamfered corners, clasping buttresses and stilted
segmental-pointed openings with moulded heads on short nook shafts with
carved capitals. Low parapet ornamented with blind quatrefoils, and shields
in shaped gables. Deeply-recessed 3-bay arcaded screen, with moulded heads,
octagonal colonnettes with carved capitals and ornamental cast iron panels
in right and left openings, leads to inner porch with carved lower-and
traceried glazed upper-panelled double doors and sidelights, up 4 steps.
4-stage tower has offsets between upper stages, and chamfered corners on 4th
stage. Canted bay window on 2nd stage. 3rd stage has balcony with fancy
iron balustrade fronting tripartite window, in segmental-pointed recess,
flanked by grotesques. Trefoil light in triangular opening, with curved
sides, on 4th stage. Arcaded frieze and cornice, with grotesques at angles,
below shaped shallow parapet and recessed spire with weather vane and
compass finial. 2-storey, 5-light square bay window at right end, relieving
arch between floors and hipped stone roof with gabled dormer window. Blind
windows in left end bay, the ground floor with carved shield. Sash windows,
paired and in groups, some with cusped heads, in pointed, Caernarvon, and
cusped openings, all with carved-stopped hoodmoulds and sill strings.
Shaped-gabled half dormers, with blind foils in gables, in bays flanking
tower. Shallow quatrefoil-ornamented parapet. Steeply-pitched roof has
ornate transverse ridge stacks. One-storey, one-bay, service wing, with end
stack, adjoins right, with 3-light cusped window. Lower wing, with
Caernarvon-arched door and circular window, adjoins further right. Similar,
restrained, 5-bay left return, with enriched oriel window between 3rd and
4th bays, and hipped roof at left end. Truncated and partly rebuilt stacks.
Similar west garden front, has 6 steps up to projecting porch with glazed
doors and overlight, in wide basket-headed opening, under 8-light mullioned
window and shallow shaped parapet. Truncated ridge stacks. One-storey,
2-span, left service wing has 2 tall stacks. North elevation has plaque in
half dormer, with raised intertwined monogram : W.R.I.H.; and gabled
bellcote with bell. Ornamental garden wall, with hollow-chamfered copings,
basket-arched gateway intermediate and terminal piers with ball finials,
adjoins south-east corner of house and curves 90° to run east for c.30m.
INTERIOR: porch has Tudor-style panelled ceiling. Entrance hall has
wainscoting with linenfold centre panels, and Jacobean-style ceiling with
geometric panels enriched with roundels, fruit and flowers. Panelled doors
and reveals in architraves. Carved wood chimney pieces with mirrored
Overmantels and Tudor-arched hoods. Staircase string enriched with carved
and moulded ribs, shields. etc.; wrought-iron balustrade. Largely disused
and dilapidated at time of resurvey. HISTORY: home of Sir Arthur J.
Dorman, co-founder of Dorman Long & Co. Ltd., from 1895-1931.
Listing NGR: NZ5362813392
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.