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The Long Walk and ornamental archway in Rivington Gardens at SD 6390 1400

A Grade II Listed Building in Rivington, Lancashire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 53.6214 / 53°37'16"N

Longitude: -2.5471 / 2°32'49"W

OS Eastings: 363911

OS Northings: 414007

OS Grid: SD639140

Mapcode National: GBR BVNK.CK

Mapcode Global: WH97L.V79M

Entry Name: The Long Walk and ornamental archway in Rivington Gardens at SD 6390 1400

Listing Date: 6 February 2013

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1410770

Location: Rivington, Chorley, Lancashire, BL6

County: Lancashire

District: Chorley

Civil Parish: Rivington

Traditional County: Lancashire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Lancashire

Church of England Parish: Rivington

Church of England Diocese: Manchester

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Summary

An elongated flight of stone steps known as the Long Walk and an associated ornamental arch in Rivington Gardens.

Description

A stone staircase with low flanking walls known as the Long Walk together with an ornamental arch across the staircase built from 1906 to a design by Thomas Mawson for Lord Leverhulme. Both features are built in gritstone.

The staircase runs from a lane close to the gate piers to the former Stone Lodge and continues uphill for approximately 200m to the Upper Drive. The staircase is crossed by a path running south from the Great Lawn and at the top of the steps at this point an ornamental archway has been built of rock-faced gritstone blocks with through stones above the arch. The voussoir is of thin gritstone slates with a keystone.

History

Rivington Gardens was one of a series of three major private gardens produced by Thomas Hayton Mawson (1861-1933) in collaboration with the industrialist and philanthropist William Hesketh Lever, Lord Leverhulme (1851-1925). The Rivington site was purchased by Lever in 1899 as a parcel of land which included the area now occupied by Lever Park to the west. Lever had already formulated ideas on how the grounds might be developed and in 1901 a single-storey wooden bungalow called 'Roynton Cottage' and intended for weekend visits and shooting parties was designed by Lever's school friend Jonathan Simpson. In 1905 Lever met Mawson who collaborated with him in the design of the gardens over the period 1906-22. However, others were also involved in the design including Thomas's son, Edward Prentice Mawson (1885-1954), who undertook the overall design and in the latter years was as much responsible for the project as his father, Robert Atkinson (1883-1952) who drew illustrations in the journal 'Civic Art' in 1911, and the landscape and architectural firm of James Pulham & Son who, in 1921, were responsible for a Japanese style garden and a steep and rugged ravine with waterfalls. Lever himself also influenced the gardens' layout, designing a seven-arched bridge across Roynton Lane.

In 1913 the bungalow was destroyed by fire then rebuilt on a grander scale. Following Lever's death in 1925 the house and gardens were purchased by John Magee. After Magee's death in 1939 the site was acquired by Liverpool Corporation and in 1948 the bungalow and three entrance lodges were demolished and the gardens became open to the public. In 1974 the site passed to the North West Water Authority following local government reorganisation.

The Long Walk and ornamental archway located at SD 6390 1400 was built from 1906 to a design by Thomas Mawson for Lord Leverhulme.

Reasons for Listing

The Long Walk and ornamental archway is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Architect: this feature is a good example of the landscape design work of Thomas Mawson;
* Group value: they not only complement the other surrounding listed structures, but are integral components of the designated garden.

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