This impressive Grade II*-listed house was built in the William and Mary style of the 17th century. Sitting within over four acres of private grounds, the house enjoys far-reaching views over South Yorkshire’s surrounding countryside. Unfolding over 5,500 sq ft, the house has two fantastic reception rooms, a generous kitchen and eight bedrooms, as well as numerous outbuildings. One of the earliest classically-designed houses of the region, a sympathetic restoration has preserved some of its exceptional original features, such as the trompe l’œil painting crowing the main staircase. Complete with a swimming pool, an entertaining hall, orchards and a greenhouse, the house makes for a wonderful self-contained oasis. Equally, Doncaster is within easy reach, with trains running from the town to London King’s Cross in around an hour and 45 minutes.
Setting the Scene
Slade Hooton Hall was built in 1698. It was commissioned by John Mirfin, who had been the Sherriff of London in 1513 and Lord Mayor in 1518. His daughter is buried locally, in All Saints Church in Lawton. The house, constructed of local limestone under a Cornish slate roof, has a handsome and symmetrical façade, with a central six-panel door and a two-panel overlight. It encompasses a plethora of incredible original features, which include bolection-moulded door architraves and fireplace surrounds, and cornicing enhanced with later 20th-century paintings. A rare sketch from 1720 by the Yorkshire artist Samuel Buck depicts the gatepiers and stable to the rear, which still exist today. The house has undergone many changes during its current ownership, including the reinstating of the original entrance hall and the addition of a glazed, garden-facing conservatory.
William and Mary is a classic style of furniture, architecture and decoration that was popular during the 17th and early 18th centuries. It takes its name from King William III and Queen Mary II of England, who reigned from 1689-1702. The style commonly featured high relief carving, strong curves, elaborate woodturning and marble fireplaces, elements which all feature in this elegant house. For more information, please see the History section.
The Grand Tour
A porticoed front entrance, flanked by columns, opens into a wide hallway with staircase to one side. Here sits a central column which has since been decorated with trompe-d’oeil marbling. With high ceilings and brilliant proportions, it makes for a grand entrance hall. Marble-tiled flooring is found underfoot, and above is a stained glass leaded window with stone mullions.
Two reception rooms sit along one side of the house. The sitting room is crowned by decorative coving and ornamental plasterwork, while panelling runs around the lower section of the walls. The walls are punctuated by wonderfully tall sash windows, framed by the original shutters. There is an open fire with a stone bolection-moulded fireplace on one side. Parquet floors have here been installed, and a pair of French doors lead into the garden. A door, framed with an ornate architrave, links this room with the dining room. Original fielded wall panels line the room, enriched with an ornate cornice decorated with an acanthus leaf motif.
The kitchen, which overlooks the extensive garden and lake, has a large, arched fireplace. Cream-painted cabinetry is topped with black granite countertops, and a fitted dresser runs the length of the room, providing space to display and store cutlery and crockery. A bright red Aga warms the room. There is also a snug on this floor, which opens into the conservatory. This room provides brilliant views over the Slates Valley.
There is another snug on this floor with further panelling, this time painted a rich green. After some investigation the room’s original colour was found, and was matched and reinstated as it can be seen here. This in turn leads to the conservatory, a wonderful room with a wooden frame and decorative engaged columns that frame brilliant views over Slates Valley.
From the hallway, a staircase with alternating spiral and plain square balusters leads upstairs. The landing’s ceiling has a trompe l’oeil: an oil painting of Dido and the Swan. There is also a ceiling light framed by a laurel gold leaf border, set above a magnificent stained glass window.
There are four double bedrooms on this floor; the principal room is lined with more gilded pitch pine panelling and has pretty views over the garden. All bedrooms have beautifully large windows, framing pretty views over the garden and surrounding fields, bookended by the original shutters. Two bedrooms benefit from en suite bathrooms, whilst a family bathroom serves the remaining two. The smallest bedroom is complete with an elegant stone fireplace and cast-iron stove.
The second floor is home to four further bedrooms and a shower room. Underneath the plan is the basement, which has been divided into a cloakroom, utility room and a games/cinema room with exposed beams.
The Great Outdoors
The hall is approached via twin gates which open onto a private driveway, leading to the rear of the house. Set within almost four acres of parkland, the house has landscaped south-facing grounds which include a lake. The formal gardens are laid mainly to lawn with a variety of mature trees and deep flower borders. There are paddocks to both the side and rear of the property, one of which is home to a productive orchard of fruit trees as well as a large glasshouse.
The stable block and barn were added in 1702 and 1705, and are now home to a heated swimming pool with soaring ceilings and exposed beams. French doors open from here straight into the garden. There is also a sauna—perfect after a crisp winter walk—as well as a shower room and WC. A useful office/study, with an adjoining wine store, sit adjacent. The top floor of the barn is now home to a voluminous games room/entertainment room with a vaulted ceiling and more exposed beams. Circular windows on two elevations frame views of the garden, whilst another pair of French doors open out onto a raised balcony. There is also a useful detached double garage with twin roller doors.
Out and About
The house is nestled within the picturesque hamlet of Slade Hooton, a settlement with a long history which dates back as far as the Saxon period. The house is close to lots of beautiful countryside, both locally and beyond. The Peak District National Park, which can be reached in under an hour by car, provides an idyllic landscape for outdoor pursuits with its exceptional vistas and elegant spa towns.
There is also a public footpath which leads through the village and on to the historic Roche Abbey, managed by English Heritage, where there are many beautiful walks in its grounds. The Black Lion at Firbeck, which is a stone’s throw from the house, serves great food and drinks.
Worksop College, a co-educational private school for both boarding and day pupils aged 13 to 18, is within striking distance of the house.
The incredible 17th century Chatsworth House is under an hour away. As well as the acres of surrounding natural parkland to explore, the 25-room house also holds one of Europe’s most distinguished art collections. The Devonshire Arms, an inn dating to the 18th century, can be found on the estate, and is a wonderful stop for an afternoon tea. Seasonal fruits and vegetables, estate-reared meat and fresh fish can be picked up at the Chatsworth Estate farm shop.
There are many brilliant amenities found in the nearby towns and villages of Tickhill, Blyth and Bawtry, as well as in both Wickersley and Thurcroft. The house is also within easy reach of Sheffield and Doncaster, where there are regular mainline trains to London St Pancras in an hour and 45 minutes, as well as to Leeds, Manchester and York in less than an hour.
Council Tax Band: G
Much of the area is steeped in history, and indeed Slade Hooton was recorded in the Domesday Book as Hotone. The name of the hamlet now derives from Slæd and hõh-tũn, which means valley and farmstead on a spur of land. The Slade prefix is thought to be able to distinguish it from other Hootons such as Hooton Levitt and Hooton Pagnell, which are both nearby. Historically it was located in the West Riding of Yorkshire, but became part of South Yorkshire in April 1974.
Nearby lies Roche Abbey, a ruined 12th-century abbey, found in a valley landscaped by ‘Capability’ Brown in the 18th century. Despite the monastery being suppressed in the 16th century, its soaring Gothic transepts still still survive to their original height. The building is ranked in importance with the finest early Gothic architecture in Britain.
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