Horton Hall Northants REVIVALHERITAGE revival heritage East front
By 1622 Horton Hall was owned by Sir Henry Montagu (Earl of Manchester from 1626) and was already a substantial property, with formal gardens surrounding the main building. Records state that further building work was done to increase the size of the hall in 1700. In 1715 George Montagu (later 1st Earl of Halifax) had the house enlarged again and in the 1720s village buildings to the east of the hall were demolished to make way for a landscaped park.
George Montagu Dunk, the second Earl employed the architect Daniel Garrett who had worked on Hawksmoore’s Mausoleum at Castle Howard from 1737-42, to encase the hall and construct new buildings in the grounds. Garrett died in 1753 so the work was then completed by the architect Thomas Wright of Durham over the next four years. During these works a large cupola dome was added to the centre of the roofline. Attributed to Wright is the addition of two domed bays to the west front, but a surviving C18th image shows that there were also two bays on the east garden front. During these four years Wright also constructed Nuthall Temple nearby in Nottinghamshire for Sir Charles Sedley. Both this building and Horton Hall were influenced by Palladio’s Villa Capra ‘La Rotonda’ in Vicenza, Italy. Montagu Dunk funded the building work at Horton with his successful career in American commerce as a powerful British statesman. He was President of the Board of Trade 1748-61, and was involved in the foundation of Nova Scotia in 1749. The capital Halifax was named after him (he was the 2nd Earl of Halifax).
By 1812 the cupolas had been removed, possibly due to structural issues. Horton Hall was sold off in 1935 and demolished in 1936