Arnolds Lost Heritage - Prominent Houses

This is not a fully fledged research article, rather it is a transcript from a talk, given by the author, on behalf of the group. As such it consists of a series of illustrations with associated notes which acted as an aide-memoire for the speaker. 

The talks aim was the highlight the prominent houses which have disappeared from the landscape around Arnold. By their very nature these large properties were owned by people with considerable wealth, the titled, professionals, institutions or self made entrepenuers.  

So what relevance you might ask is the illustration to the right? This bijou residence "Bumble Bee Cottage" stood on Cross Street, opposite the Baptist church and met it's demise in the 1950's. It serves to remind us that for every lodge or manor that has disappeared over time, Arnold has lost swaths of its more humble housing, much of which was substandard and fit only for the bulldozer, but all historically important in it's own right. 

The Guide House, Redhill

The Guide House, Redhill

1865. Dr. Wright Allen (1804-1887) Pictured  with his family outside Moira House

1865. Dr. Wright Allen (1804-1887) Pictured with his family outside Moira House

Sherwood Lodge

Sherwood Lodge was built two miles north of Redhill on land alloted in the 1791 Enclosure Award for Arnold to William Coape Sherbrooke.

It remained in the family’s hands until 1850 when it was sold to  Samuel.W. Welfitt of Langwith Lodge. Samuel leased the Lodge to The Reverend G.F. Holcombe, vicar of Arnold from 1812-1872.

After the Rev Holcombes death in 1872, Welfitt sold the Lodge to Lt . Col . Charles Seeley (1834-1915). Seeley enlarged the house without altering its 18th century character. The Neo–Gothic church was added in 1903.

Early in1947 Sir Hugh Seeley sold the estate to the National Coal Board.

In 1973 Nottinghamshire County Council purchased the estate and 96 acres of land from the coal board for £100,000 and demolished the house and church shortly afterwards. The present CLASP office building replaced the house in 1979 and formed part of the new County police headquarters.

Arno Vale House

Situated between Thackerays Lane, Saville Rd and Arno Vale Rd, the house was built around 1800.

One of the Early occupants was the Rev.Biddle.

J.L. Thackeray purchased the property in the mid 19th century and he substantially rebuilt it. He died in 1886. His widow Eliza died there in 1899.

The last occupants were the daughters of lace manufacturer, Horace.A. Fisher. The building was demolished in July 1935.

Grove House. Arnold. By  Artist Tom Hammond c1920.

Grove House. Arnold. By Artist Tom Hammond c1920.

Bumble Bee Cottage

Bumble Bee Cottage

The Guide House, Redhill

The first mention of a building on the site of Lodge Farm occurs in 1597, when Edward Stanhope, the Lord of the Manor, leases to Henry Gibson, “a cottage built upon the waste [Forest] and never before rented, which Henry Gibson had repaired and enlarged by the addition of I Bay.”

By 1609 the cottage and two adjoining fields , in all about 25 acres, were owned by Lady Ann Markham, the wife of the exiled Lord of the manor, Sir Griffin Markham of Bestwood Lodge.

Between 1612 and 1620 it was leased to Patrick Lambe. Although it was a obstensively a farmhouse it was also used as an illicit public house. Patrick was before the quarter sessions no fewer than 14 times for brewing without a license. He died in 1626 leaving goods worth £112.

In 1670 the building was taxed as having 3 hearths and this is all we know of the timber framed building. If Pevsners dating is correct the building, we remember, was erected in 1700 and was leased by Robert Lambe. Prior to its demolition, timbers were tested and the results suggested they were from around 1710.

Source. Grahame . J. Parkes. 24/10/1974

Moira House

Extracts of its history 1789 - 1976.

Moira House stood on Front Street on what became the site for ASDA.

In the Inclosure award of 1789, the homestead known as Moira House was owned by Edward Jones of Arnold who farmed about 68 Acres. This was the site of his own house and farm buildings. The homestead had been in his family for over 50 Years.

On the front of the house there was, until it was demolished in 1976, a Norwich General Insurance Plaque. The number of the policy was issued c1798. So we may assume that the plaque was transferred from one building to another and that the house was built before that date.

Lord Moira was in England between 1781 and 1813. His hounds and kennels etc were on the site of Bentwell House which was built by the Leverton Family. The cost of maintaining his lordships hounds and kennels was said to be around £8,000 a year.

In the Tithe Award for1842, Thomas Wolstenholm occupied the property and it was leased by Thomas Rhodes.

In 1865, a Dr. Wright Allen [1804-1887] lived with family in Moira House.

The last occupant of Moira House, Mrs.P. Webber gave permission for a full survey to be done of the house on 15th of August 1976. Later that month the property demolished. Thanks must go to, Mr.B. Worville, Mr.G.Parkes, and Mr.M.W .Spick for their combined work in recording Moira House.

Arno Vale House c1912

Arno Vale House c1912

The Grove

The Grove was built on land south of St Marys church, known as ”Arnold Grove” adjacent to Allens Walk.

The property was built by the Turbutt family in the 18th century, the family hailed from Ogston Hall in Derbyshire.

Mr. William Williams, a solicitor. was resident in 1853.

George. W. Leigh, who was decribed as a capable surgeon, lived in the house for many years before his death in 1886, aged 75 years.

In later years the house was used as an orphanage before being demolished in  the 1920s to make way for housing.

Russell and King.1913.   OS. Map . 1900.   Whites Directory. 1853.

Chestnut House Academy

Chestnut House stood on Front Street opposite the Cross Keys public house. 

Chestnut House Academy was in existence from 1844 - 1875. The academy principal was Joseph Phipps (1814-1880). It was a private school first mentioned in Morris’s Directory of 1844.

In the 1871 Census, Joseph Phipps has 38 students with ages ranging from 8 to 16 Years and coming as far afield as London , Lincolnshire and Hull. There is a description as follows, “The school and house are surrounded by extensive gardens with a private playground. There is a large lecture and recreation Hall, 36ft X 17ft. Also provided are hot and cold baths".

The building later became Miss Robinsons School c1910 and later still, Chestnut Villas. It was finally demolished in the 1960's.

Miss Robinsons School c1910

Miss Robinsons School c1910

Daybrook House

This house stood on the north side of what is now Ribblesdale Road in Daybrook. It was the home of Tom Potter. Tom was the son of the late Thomas Potter (died 1880) of Swansea House, Trowell, Nottm. Tom, junior was born in Trowell in 1856 and was educated at Loughborough Grammar School. Between 1889 and 1898 he was the managing director of both Digby and Ilkeston Colliery Companys. He also served as a Justice of the Peace. Tom married in 1881 to Annie M Blain, the only daughter of Sir W . A. Blain. He took an  interest in agriculture and was fond of cricket and hunting. 

Between 1934 and 1973 the house was used as a "Lodge" by the Freemasons and was named the Masonic Hall, Daybrook House, Daybrook.

Redhill Lodge c1900

Redhill Lodge c1900

In the following year, 1908, the estate was purchased by Nottingham Corporation. John Henry was then 42 years of age. We know in the following years John Hardy took a keen interest in social and philanthropic work in Arnold and was a commisioner for Notts Boy Scouts. In his last 15 Years he represented Arnold on Notts County Council. He identifying himself principally with agriculture and local affairs. John Hardy passed away on 21st of January 1937. The cause of death was certified as ”Lobar Pneumonia” by a Dr H. Francis.

The Estate realised over £78,262 with £ 12,752 payable in estate duties. Two Chippendale Chairs realised £987. The Estate was left to relatives and other named individuals. The house and land then came into the ownership of the Air Ministry. In 1958 the property and land were then put on the market by order of The Secretary of State for Air. The area is now covered by Private Housing.

Daybrook House, on the right.

Daybrook House, on the right.

Redhill Lodge

John Kirke was the the first occupant of Redhill Lodge. He died on September 14th 1840, aged 44 years.

Bizarrely, Redhill Lodge was the venue for the Marino Sheep Trials in the 1840's.

There was at Redhill Lodge a fine Gallery of Pictures.

The Lodge was largely rebuilt and improved by Mr Francis Burton, a solicitor. Mr Burton died in 1892, aged 78 years. His daughter was married to the Rev. E.M. Vaughan, vicar of St Pauls, Daybrook.

John Henry Hardy was born in Greasley in 1866 to Thomas Hardy a local brewer and his wife, Mary Ann. In 1890 Thomas bought Bulwell Hall from  a Mr Cooper. Thomas Hardy died in1897.

The estate was left in trust for, Mary Ann & the Rev.T.B. Hardy. In 1904 the Rev Hardy died and Mary Ann died shortly after in 1907.

The estate then passed to John Henry Hardy and his brother Charles, with, Richard Fitzhugh as Trustee.

John H Hardy, newspaper picture from the estate sale c1937

John H Hardy, newspaper picture from the estate sale c1937

Goodwood House

We know very little about this fine building. It stood on land which ran between Cross St and Mansfield Rd with its entrance opposite Mill Lane (off Cross St). James Acton had the house built in 1883.

The house and its five acres of paddocks were sold for £73,000 after the death of Alderman Sydney Farr in 1967.

It maybe possible to link the Acton and Farr familys geneologically, starting with the fact that James Acton's, youngest daughter, Florence married John Thomas Parr in 1890.  Florence died, aged only 30, on 24th March 1900. Giving her date of birth as c1870.

The next task would be to trace this couples offspring. It is known they had at least one daughter, also called Florence, who was born in 1890 and died aged 66, in 1956.

The nine houses detailed above represent those for which we have photographs and information, albeit scant information in some cases. Each property and it's associated families could easily become an in depth research project in it's right.

There are other properties, such as Washington House, Cherry Hill and the Round House on Gedling Rd, that would also be worth investigation. 

Historical research is always on going and has no obvious end point. This talk in ten years time could and hopefully will be a completely different, nearer the truth maybe but still not complete. 

P. E. Hunt © ALHG 2020

Washington House

Washington House

The Round House, Gedling Road. Demolished in 1937.

The Round House, Gedling Road. Demolished in 1937.


1: Russell & King. A History of Arnold.1913.

2: Lost Houses of Nottinghamshire. Philip.E. Jones. 2006.

3: The Book of Arnold. M.W. Spick. 1990.

4: Whites Directory. 1853.

5: Drakes Directory. 1860.

6: Arnold & Daybrook. OD Map.1899.[Godfrey Edition]

7: Contemporary Biographies.W.T. Pike. Editor.[1901]

8: Graham. J. Parks. 24/10/1974.

9: Villiage to Town. Pg.51.

10: Lanes Masonic Records. 1717/1894.

11: Picture the Past. Photo of Grove House, Arnold,from a picture by Tom Hammond.

12: Pictures from the A.L.H.G .Photo Archive.

13: History of Nottinghamshire. Cornelius Brown. 1891. Page. 27.

14: Authors Notes & Photographs.



01.05.2022 20:36

I lived opposite Goodwood House on Cross street from 1961 until it's demolition. We played in the grounds, spooky place like a haunted house. I remember very posh garden parties with wealthy guest

Margaret Holmes

25.01.2022 22:49

I would like to know where off Front Street was Draytons Yard.

Andrew Portass

02.05.2022 19:00

I believe it was near to the shops at bottom of Coppice Road.
There was some houses , then to the left were Provisions shop Dexters, Butchers Ellis, Sweets Clarkes Chip shop Dexters Sulleys Offlience

Lynne Gadd

26.01.2022 19:52

Hi Margaret, Drayton’s yard was on the left hand side at the top end of Front St, just past Wellington St. Coppice Rd (Spout Lane) was on opposite side slightly further up. Lynne Gadd (secretary)

George Kenneth Gadsby

13.01.2021 13:50

The guide house redhill
I was born in the guide house and still live where it stood ,
It was jerry built in 1700, it was knocked down before it fell

Robert Victor Stanfield

03.06.2020 16:59

One of my ancestors is buried outside the porch at St Marys (Robert Victor Stanfield) and I believe lived (owned?) Stanfields Yard also at the barn next to the Robin Hood on Cross St

Maureen Hall

19.11.2021 21:41

Robert Victor Stanfield was my great great grandfather. I remember sitting on the tomb when I was a child not knowing who was buried within it.

Latest comments

06.11 | 11:30

I was born and brought up on Saville Road. Our house plot was believed to have been on the site of Arnot Hill House stables and kennels as my Dad was always digging up bones in the back garden.

Sandra, we contacted Bonington House about the trophy you refer to but unfortunately have been unable to locate it, if you could provide more information, we may be able to look into it further. Lynne

03.11 | 15:32

28.10 | 19:31

Hi Sandra, we will look into this for you and post a reply on this site as soon as we have any information. Lynne

Hello Tim
A picture is now on gallery page requested pictures. The exhibition in Arnold library is about Front Street

25.10 | 13:16