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Haddon Hall

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;

In the civil parish of Nether Haddon.
In the historic county of Derbyshire.
Modern Authority of Derbyshire.
1974 county of Derbyshire.
Medieval County of Derbyshire.

OS Map Grid Reference: SK23506636
Latitude 53.19380° Longitude -1.64967°

Haddon Hall has been described as a certain Fortified Manor House.

There are major building remains.

This is a Grade 1 listed building protected by law*.


Large double courtyard, fortified manor house. Seat of the Dukes of Rutland and built by the Vernon family. Fragments of C12 works but mainly of two periods with the upper courtyard built mainly in the second quarter of C14 and the lower courtyard built mostly in C15, but also with major refashionings and alterations of C16 and C17 and a major restoration between 1920 and 1930, supervised by Mr Leonard Stanhope, the Clerk of Works. Limestone and gritstone rubble and ashlar gritstone with gritstone dressings and quoins. Leaded roof, mostly hidden by embattled parapets with ridgeback copings, roofs and parapets mostly C20. Numerous stone ridge and side wall stacks, mostly C20, some with crenellated tops, plus massive late C15 exernal stacks to west side of Great Hall and, possibly C14, corbelled out stone stacks to north walls. Two storeys with four storey north-west gatetower, and three storey eastern Peveril Tower and north-east lodgings to upper courtyard. Double courtyard plan on sloping site with upper courtyard to north-east and lower courtyard to south-west. Upper courtyard has Peveril's Tower, the original entrance, and the state bedroom to east range, Long Gallery to south and the present Duke's apartments to north, whilst the lower courtyard has the continuation of the private apartments and the north-west entrance tower to north, offices and lodgings to west and the Chapel and the Earl's Bedroom to south, between the two courtyards the Great Hall and its service rooms. North elevation has late C15 entrance tower to west with C14 kitchen range to east and beyond the Duke's apartments, mostly C17 but much restored. Entrance tower has steps up to moulded, shallow pointed arch with hoodmould and double studded oak doors. To west a slit window and beyond an ornate ashlar, stepped buttress with relief carving to upper part. Above door a blank plaque with hoodmould and 3-light cavetto moulded mullion window with pointed lights and incised spandrels, set in ovolo moulded recess with hoodmould. Above again similar plaque, but decorated with upturned acorns, and similar 3-light window. Similar blank plaque and window over with large coat of arms immediately above, breaking through the moulded stringcourse with gargoyles,on to the parapets. Beyond the C14 stacks to east, a C17 wing with range of recessed and chamfered mullion windows. Attached to west corner of tower, an embattled ashlar wall with four-centred arched doorcase with hoodmould, under large coat of arms of the 'Kings of the Peak', which has to either side a carved frieze of the Vernons family shields. West side of tower has polygonal staircase turret to south corner, corbelled out at first floor level. (PastScape ref. listing description)

A licence, specifically for uncrenellated defences, was granted in c. 1194 (Click on the date for details of this licence.).


Major refashionings and alterations of C16 and C17 and a major restoration between 1920 and 1930. 'The English castle par excellence' - Pevsner. In 1195 was granted a licence, by his mense lord, John, Count of Mortain (Later King John), to enclose the house with a 12ft uncrenellated wall, possibly this licence (more supportive than permissive) was required because of local jealousies.
This very well known house is almost never called a castle (Pevsner is a marked exception) and quite often is not even described as fortified despite clearly being a much more strongly defended house than many a 'true' castle. The later alteration have open it up but in the middle ages it would have been as strongly defended as any house.
Links to archaeological and architectural databases, mapping and other online resources

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*The listed building may not be the actual medieval building, but a building on the site of, or incorporating fragments of, the described site.
This record last updated 26/07/2017 09:20:09

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