List entry

List entry Summary

This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

Name: MENTMORE TOWERS

List entry Number: 1117863

Location

MENTMORE TOWERS

The building may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County District District Type Parish
BuckinghamshireAylesbury ValeDistrict AuthorityMentmore

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: I

Date first listed: 26-Sep-1951

Date of most recent amendment: 15-Oct-1984

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: LBS

UID: 42105

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Building

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

History

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Details

SP 91 NW MENTMORE

4/120 Mentmore Towers (formerly listed as Mentmore House) 26.9.51

GV I

Formerly a country house, now the British Seat of the World Government of the Age of Enlightenment. Built 1852-4 by Sir Joseph Paxton and G.H. Stokes for Baron Mayer Amschel de Rothschild. Ancaster ashlar, flat lead roofs. In the Jacobethan style, much influenced by Wollaton Hall. Main block of 2 storeys is almost square in plan with projecting 3-storey corner towers and single storey wings flanking entrance courtyard. Right wing masks service court to north. Main block is articulated by entablatures and pairs of lugged pilasters on plinths: ground floor is Doric with triglyph entablature; first floor is Ionic and has plinths with cartouches. Balustraded parapet with stone urns on plinths and, on N.E. side, a central scrolled gable with broken segmental pediment, clock and flanking obelisks. Towers have Corinthian pilasters on plinths with cartouches, entablatures with carved heads, and scrolled gables with small pediments, central open roundels, heraldic lion finials and corner obelisks. Groups of round stone chimney shafts with panelled capitals and linked cornice heads. Stone mullion windows with double transoms. N.E. front has 5-light windows in outer bays, and slightly projecting centrepiece with 2-light windows flanking 4-light. Towers have 4-light windows or elaborate strapwork cartouches. Central double panelled doors with large radiating fanlight. Single storey porch has semi-circular arch to each face with carved lion-head keystones, flanking pairs of lugged Doric columns, and triglyph entablature with central Rothschild crest. Flanking wings have rows of 6 arched niches, triglyph entablature and balustraded parapet, and terminate in similar 2-storey towers to front. Remainder is similar, the S.E. front with central heraldic crests and cyphers dated 1851, and keyblock dated AH1878. Service wing is of 2 storeys and a basement with a single Doric order and similar parapets, and is built around a small court with inner walls of white brick and entrance arch to N.W. Interior: central 2-storey hall is faced with Caen stone and has arcaded first floor gallery with marble balustrade. Glazed ceiling with wooden ribs, plaster coving with moulded strapwork cartouches. Ground floor of hall has large arched doors with early examples of plate glass, and fireplace, said to have come from Rubens' house in Antwerp, of black and white marble with large projecting entablature hood on scrolled sheep herms. Other ground floor rooms have heavy carved marble fireplaces with large mirrors above, carved skirting boards and door surrounds with panelled doors. Rooms in S.E. range have plaster ceilings with gilt Rococo decoration, some C18 imported from France. Dining room has very fine C18 boiseries and gilt ceiling from the Hotel de Villars, Paris, with C18 Genoese velvet in some panels and paintings by Van Loo over the mirrors. Small room to right of entrance front also has C18 french panelling with overdoors by Boucher. Stairwell is of Caen stone with Jacobethan plaster ceiling; single lower flight and double upper flights of stairs with marble balustrades. First floor has suites of bedrooms, also with marble fireplaces, and with bathroom fittings adapted from C18 french commodes. His Lordship's Room has plaster gilt Rococo ceiling. Mentmore is also notable as one of the earliest houses to have a hot water and central heating system. (SAVE Britain's Heritage, Mentmore for the Nation, 1977)

Listing NGR: SP9025119659

Selected Sources

  1. Book  Reference - Title: Mentmore for the Nation - Date: 1977
  2. Unpublished Title  Reference - Title: Part 4 Buckinghamshire - Journal Title: Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest in England

National Grid Reference: SP 90251 19659

Map


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This copy shows the entry on 19-Sep-2014 at 04:51:34.