Chetwynd Park 779

Telford, England, Shropshire

Brief Description

Chetwynd Park is an 18th-century landscape park with woodland, which lay southeast of Chetwynd Park House. The country house is now lost, but the deer park survives as an agricultural showground.

History

The first park at Chetwynd was in existence by 1388. The present park was laid out by 1752, and was substantially redesigned in the 1860s, along with a rebuilding of the house.

Detailed Description

The following is from the Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest. For the most up-to-date Register entry, please visit the The National Heritage List for England (NHLE):

www.historicengland.org.uk/lis...

DESCRIPTION

LOCATION, AREA, BOUNDARIES, LANDFORM, SETTING

Chetwynd lies on the A41 from Newport, 3km to the south-east, to Whitchurch, c 30km to the north-east. The present road is a modern by-pass, built to replace that down the east side of the deer park, known as the Chetwynd Road or The Longford, which separates the park from the site of the house and its pleasure grounds. Reputedly a Roman road, that survives as a local route. The Scaur, the ridge-like rocky outcrop around which the deer park is laid out, rears up alongside the road. The area here registered is c 120ha.

ENTRANCES AND APPROACHES

After the Newport & District Agricultural Society purchased the deer park a new showground entrance was made at its south-west corner, off the B5062 Edgmond Road. Chetwynd Park is approached by a drive off the A41, the houses made from its former farm buildings by a short road east off the minor road to Adbaston, which leads north off the A41 passing east of the walled kitchen garden.

Some 250m south of Chetwynd Park, on the north side of Chetwynd Road, is Church Lodge (listed grade II) of c 1860. The drive to Chetwynd Park, already present in the 1840s, is cut by the present A41, opened c 1980. Opposite the Lodge, on the south side of the road, is a gate into the deer park. Middle Lodge (listed grade II; major restoration in progress 1998), again of c 1860, stands 1km south-east of Chetwynd Park on the east side of Chetwynd Road. Again the drive to Chetwynd Park, present by the 1840s and in this case running north for 400m before turning north-west, has been bisected by the A41. A third lodge, of 1873, Pool Lodge (listed grade II; major restoration in progress 1998), stands at the south-east corner of the registered area. It is on the west side of Chetwynd Road and adjoins a gate into the deer park. There was already a lodge here in the 1840s. All three lodges are different, and exhibit a variety of broadly gothic decoration in stone, brick and mock timber framing.

PRINCIPAL BUILDING

Chetwynd Park, demolished in 1961, was a C17 building with multiple-gabled facades, with alterations of the C18 and C19. It was replaced by a new, smaller house.

North of, behind, the house site, are farm buildings including two late C18 stable ranges (both listed grade II) and a small, early C19, single-storey gothick cottage (listed grade II). The farm buildings were converted to residential use in the 1990s. An C18 dovecote (listed grade II) stands 150m south-west of the house site.

GARDENS AND PLEASURE GROUNDS

Chetwynd Park retains a balustraded terrace on its north side and there are large numbers of mature specimen trees around its grounds. Immediately south of the house is the site of Chetwynd old church, rebuilt in 1775 and demolished in the mid 1860s when the new church of St Michael and its Rectory were built 250m to the south-west, immediately outside the north corner of the deer park. Some gravestones still survive in the former churchyard. Close by is the well-head-like entrance to the Hall's icehouse.

The gardens at Chetwynd were newly laid out in the 1860s when the house was rebuilt, extending over the site of the church, graveyard and Rectory. By the late C19 there was an arboretum here, which provided cuttings used for planting up the new church drive.

PARK

The parkland comprises two parts. West of Chetwynd Road, contained within a stone wall, is the deer park. East and north of the same road is the ornamental parkland associated with Chetwynd Park.

The deer park is roughly triangular, 1.4km long from north to south by up to 800m wide. It is surrounded by a red sandstone wall, well maintained to the east but with ruinous and brick-patched sections to the south and west. The park's main feature is The Scaur (The Scarr on late C19 OS maps), a sandstone outcrop which runs as a ridge from north to south down its centre and with a steep, in parts almost cliff-like, face along its east side. The Scaur is well wooded with largely mature trees, mostly beech and oak. There are a few veterans. From its edge there are spectacular views in all directions, most notably over the flat countryside towards Stafford, 20km to the east. In the past stone has been got from along The Scaur and vertical quarry faces remain from the workings, most notably close to its north end. Although the date of the workings is unknown it would seem likely that they supplied the stone for the earlier C19 park wall, and perhaps the C18 and C19 buildings at Chetwynd Park. At the north end of The Scaur is an icehouse. Here there are various mature specimen trees including coniferous examples, an extension of the arboretum around the house.

Behind, west of, The Scaur the ground slopes away fairly gently. The southern part of this area is permanent pasture with occasional mature parkland trees. Faint ridge and furrow is visible 200m north of the south corner of the park. Midway up the west half of the park a substantial ditch runs east/west across it. Although this does not today form a boundary line it may in the past have marked the southern limit of the park's main wooded compartment. Northward of the ditch is a much greater density of mature trees, mostly oak, in what is essentially an area of wood pasture. Running for 400m north-east up its edge, beginning at the west end of the major east/west ditch, is an avenue of mature oaks. Towards the centre of the wood-pasture area is a small railed dogs' grave.

Close to the north corner of the deer park, opposite Chetwynd Manor (formerly the Rectory), is a stone well house, probably of c 1800.

Eastward of the bottom of The Scaur the ground is fairly level. Groundworks including levelling, terracing and reseeding took place in the 1990s, when that part of the park west of Park Pool became a showground, and new service roads were laid from the new showground entrance along the south edge of the park and up the west side of the showground. Park Pool was present by 1808.

There was a park at Chetwynd in 1388 which contained a house called 'le mot'. Whether this was coterminous with the present deer park, first documented in 1752, and if so whether that park had a continuous history, is unknown. It would however seem improbable: no park is shown on the county maps of Saxton (1577), Speed (1611) or Morden (1695). The map evidence (Rocque and Baugh) suggests that the north-west section of the park, whose boundary juts outwards in an angular fashion, may have been imparked between 1752 and 1808. The same maps indicate that in the later C18 and still in 1808 the park extended south to Edgmond Road (the B5062), contracting to its present southern boundary before the mid C19. As it is this line which is followed by the park wall (apparently of a single build) that would seem likely to be of earlier C19 date. In the late C19 the park was described as 'wild, hilly and well timbered' (Stamper 1993, 531), its trees including oak, beech, Wych elm, Horse and Spanish chestnut and some crab apples. At that time the park had a herd of fallow deer; its descendants formed a seventy-five-strong herd in 1998.

The land north of Chetwynd Road was added to the park by J C B Borough in the 1860s.

KITCHEN GARDEN

Chetwynd's walled kitchen garden lies 200m west of the house site. The main compartment is rectangular, 80m east/west by 60m, and with slips to east, west and south. A gardener's house stands outside the north-east corner of the garden.

REFERENCES

F Leach, The County Seats of Salop (1891)

M Wheat, Chetwynd, Salop (1958)

P Reid, Burke's and Savills Guide to Country Houses: Volume II, Herefordshire ... (1980), pp 82-3

D H Robinson, The Sleepy Meese (1988), pp 82-3

P A Stamper, A Survey of Historic Parks and Gardens in Shropshire, (Report for Shropshire County Council 1993), pp 530-1

Maps

J Rocque, Map of Shropshire, 1752

R Baugh, Map of Shropshire, 1808

C and J Greenwood, Map of Shropshire, 1827

Tithe map for Chetwynd, 1838 (Shropshire Records and Research Centre)

OS 6" to 1 mile: 1st edition surveyed 1878-80, published 1891-2; 2nd edition surveyed 1901, published 1903

OS 25" to 1 mile: 1st edition surveyed 1880, published 1881; 2nd edition surveyed 1900, published 1902

Features
  • Drive
  • Earliest Date:
  • Latest Date:
  • Icehouse
  • Earliest Date:
  • Latest Date:
  • Hunting Lodge
  • Earliest Date:
  • Latest Date:
  • Modern House (featured building)
  • Earliest Date:
  • Latest Date:
Authorities

Civil Parish

  • Chetwynd
History

Detailed History

The first park at Chetwynd was present by 1388 (Staffs. Historical Collections 16 1895, 28), and at that time it contained a house called 'Le Mot.' However, it does not seem that this medieval park is equivalent to the park present on the site by 1752 (Rocque 1752), as no park is shown at Chetwynd on the 16th- and 17th-century maps of Saxton (1577), Speed (1611), and Morden (1695).

The following is from the Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest. For the most up-to-date Register entry, please visit the The National Heritage List for England (NHLE):

www.historicengland.org.uk/lis...

HISTORIC DEVELOPMENT

From the 15th to the later 18th century Chetwynd was held by the Pigotts. The last of them, Robert, Sheriff of Shropshire in 1774, sold the estate and moved to Geneva, where he died in 1794.

The estate was then purchased by Thomas Borrow, member of a Derbyshire iron-founding family, who subsequently changed his name to Borough. Thomas, who moved to Chetwynd in 1803, was succeeded by his son John Charles Burton Borough, Sheriff of Shropshire in 1841.

In the 1860s there was a major building campaign carried out by J.C.B. Borough. Chetwynd Hall was reworked as Chetwynd Park, and at the same time the church and rectory which stood in the grounds (the church just beside the hall) were demolished and replaced by new structures 250 metres to the southwest. Terraced lawns were laid out on the site of the old church, new gardens were designed, and the park was enlarged.

As the estate declined in the 20th century, Chetwynd Hall was demolished and replaced by a modern house in the 1960s. In the later 1980s the Borough family sold the estate. The deer park was purchased by the Newport & District Agricultural Society, which remained the owner in 1998, and its south-east part became an agricultural showground. The former home farm buildings were converted for residential use, and they and the land passed into divided ownership.

Contact
References

References