Doddington Hall is the work of Robert Smythe, a renowned architect from the 16th century. This Elizabethan house was built for Thomas Tailor, registrar to the Bishop of Lincoln, and sold to Colonel George Jarvis in 1830, whose descendants own the house today.
Five different families have lived in Doddington Hall over the past 400 years. In that time, the house has never been emptied or sold, so it includes a timeline of household items such as ceramics, paintings and textiles from right back in the the 17th century to today. The brick exterior is part of the original building built in 1595 for Thomas Tailor, Registrar to the Bishop of Lincoln, but most of the internal decorations are Georgian in style. In 1830, Colonel George Jarvis inherited the house from Sarah Gunman, the property’s heiress; Clare Birch, who lives there now with her family, is a direct descendent of his.
Look out for the Duke of Cumberland’s famous Tiger Bedroom; his claim to fame is that he was behind the persecution of Bonnie Prince Charlie’s Jacobites. Upstairs there is also the Long Gallery, where the Elizabethans strolled or played games on rainy days, and which was used as a bowling alley by the Georgians. Today it is used for exhibitions or concerts.
Outside you can admire the architecture which dates back way back to the 1600s. Doddington enjoyed a stroke of luck in the Civil War, when it avoided damage since it was occupied by family members on both sides of the conflict.
Outside, there are five acres of gardens to be enjoyed with plenty of space for a picnic in the summer. They include Doddington’s Kitchen Garden, which grows fresh seasonal vegetables as well as wild and walled gardens. No matter what time of the year you visit, the gardens are blooming. Around March, flowering shrubs, spring bulbs, snowdrops, rhododendrons and dogs-tooth violets sprout up, and later in spring you can spot rare daffodils and summer brings in colourful bearded iris blossom.
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