Use Places & People to search over 6,600 parks and gardens in the UK and 2,100 biographies of people associated with them. Image location: Bedgebury National Pinetum

Learn about the rich heritage of parks and gardens in Topics.
Image location: Powis Castle

Follow News & Events, updated regularly with the latest information affecting historic parks and gardens. Image location: Sheffield Botanical Gardens

Visit the Schools for ideas and activities to encourage the interest of children and young people in their local parks. Image location: Trentham

Join us as a volunteer and Research & Record historic parks and gardens in your area.
Image location: Cirencester Abbey

View the Illustrated Glossary which provides definitions and accompanying images for terms and concepts associated with historic parks and gardens. Image location: Pannett Park

Robert Smythson - Summary

Date of Birth: 1535

Date of Death: 15/10/1614

Gender: male

Occupation: Builder

Narrative:

Robert Smythson, architect and mason, was 79 at the time of his death. However, there is no evidence that indicates the exact date or year of his birth.

There is evidence to suggest, however, that Smythson was working at Longleat House, Wiltshire, England by 1568 where he was employed as master mason by Sir John Thynne. Within 10 years Smythson is known to have been working on alterations at Wardour Castle, Wiltshire for the Arundell family. The castle later became a picturesque feature within the 18th-century landscape developed by a later generation of the family.

It has been suggested that Robert Smythson's connection with Wardour provided him with his commission at Wollaton Hall in Nottinghamshire. There he was Surveyor of the Works between 1530 and 1588. Other notable works or commissions in England included Hardwick Hall, Derbyshire (1590-1); Burton Agnes, Yorkshire (1601-10); and Welbeck Abbey, Nottinghamshire, all of which reveal Smythson's firm understanding of classical architecture.

His son, Sir John Smythson also worked at Wollaton, in the service of the Cavendish rather than the Willoughby family. Robert died at Wollaton on 15 October 1614.

This person is associated with the following sites: