DiCamillo Companion

Nuthall Temple (Nuttall Temple)

  • Built / Designed For: Sir Charles Sedley

    House & Family History: Nuthall Temple's central rotunda was a riot of Rococo plasterwork by Thomas Roberts of Oxford, who was paid the large sum of £1,000 (approximately £115,000 in 2012 values using real price commodity index) by Sir Charles Sidley for his work in 1765. James Wyatt's Music Room was in his Neoclassical style and had plasterwork probably executed by Joseph Rose. Nuthall passed from the Sidley family to the Vernons of Sudbury Hall and was put up for sale and purchased at auction by Robert Holden of Darley Hall, in 1817. It remained in the Holden family until 1929, when, no buyers being found, the House was sold for £800 to the housebreaking firm of J.H. Brough & Co. On July 31, 1929 the West Wing was loaded with firelighters, sprinkled with paraffin, and set on fire in front of a large crowd. The House proved to be so well built that the demolition work was ultimately abandoned and the House was left a ruined shell until it was completely blown up in 1966 to make way for the M1 motorway). A number of the Nuthall Temple's architectural features, including the four exterior sphinxes and the exterior stairs, were purchased by the dealer A. Spero of London. The architect Paul Paget incorporated many architectural fragments from Nuthall at Templewood House, the 1938 house he built in Norfolk for Sir Samuel Hoare. The Holden family kept the Nuthall land until the 1950s; the family ultimately decamped to Sibdon Castle in Shropshire. Nuthall Temple was one of five Palladian houses built in Britain based on Palladio's famous 16th century Villa Rotonda outside Vicenza (the others being Chiswick House, Greater London; Mereworth Castle, Kent; Henbury Hall, Cheshire; and Foots Cray Place, Kent [demolished]).

    Collections: Wright of Derby (Joseph Wright) portraits and James Wyatt-designed chairs from Nuthall Temple are today in the collection at Sibdon Castle, where the Holden family moved after Nuthall was demolished. Nuthall also contained a very fine circa 1787 Wright of Derby view of a sunset on the coast near Salerno.

    Comments: Giles Worsley, writing in "England's Lost Houses," states that Nuthall contained "one of the finest Rococo interiors in Britain" and goes on to say "it is very hard to think of another English Rococo house to rival it."

  • Architect: James Wyatt

    Date: Circa 1778
    Designed: Alterations and interior decoration for Sir Charles Sedley, Bt.

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    Architect: Thomas Wright

    Date: 1754
    Designed: House for Sir Charles Sedley, Bt.

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  • Vitruvius Britannicus: C. IV, pls. 56, 57, 1767.

    Country Life: LIII, 570, 606, 1923.

  • Title: Treasure Houses of Britain, The - SOFTBACK
    Author: Jackson-Stops, Gervase (Editor)
    Year Published: 1985
    Reference: pg. 393
    Publisher: Washington, DC: National Gallery of Art (New Haven: Yale University Press)
    ISBN: 0300035530
    Book Type: Softback

    Title: England's Lost Houses From the Archives of Country Life
    Author: Worsley, Giles
    Year Published: 2002
    Reference: pg. 68
    Publisher: London: Aurum Press
    ISBN: 1854108204
    Book Type: Hardback

    Title: Biographical Dictionary of British Architects, 1600-1840, A - SOFTBACK
    Author: Colvin, Howard
    Year Published: 1995
    Reference: pg. 1115
    Publisher: New Haven: Yale University Press
    ISBN: 0300072074
    Book Type: Softback

    Title: Destruction of the Country House, The
    Author: Strong, Roy; Binney, Marcus; Harris, John
    Year Published: 1974
    Publisher: London: Thames & Hudson Ltd.
    ISBN: 0500270052X
    Book Type: Softback

    Title: No Voice From the Hall: Early Memories of a Country House Snooper
    Author: Harris, John
    Year Published: 1998
    Publisher: London: John Murray
    ISBN: 0719555671
    Book Type: Hardback

  • House Listed: Demolished

    Park Listed: Destroyed

  • Past Seat / Home of: Sir Charles Sedley, 5th Bt., 17th century. Vernon family. Robert Holden, early 19th century; Robert Millington Holden, early 20th century.

    Current Ownership Type: Demolished

    Primary Current Ownership Use: Demolished

  • House Open to Public: No

    Historic Houses Member: No