Sunday, 4 October 2015

(187) Arnold of Nethercott House, Iddesleigh

In 1825 it was claimed that William Arnold of Nethercott was the 18th successive owner of the property to have that name, and whatever degree of exaggeration there may be in this claim, there is no doubt that the Arnold family were substantial yeomen in Iddesleigh parish for many generations.  They can be traced back in the records of the village to Thomas Arnolde, mentioned in the Lay Subsidy rolls of 1524-27, and in this part of Devon for over 800 years. By the beginning of the 19th century they owned or rented a number the Nethercott, Henacroft and Fursedon estates at Iddesleigh, and part of North Wyke, a medieval and 17th century property where both the house and the lands were divided into two in the 18th century.
North Wyke, Iddesleigh
The western half was sold to Andrew Arnold in 1785 as Westpark Farm, and sometime after 1844 his descendants began renting Eastpark Farm as well. In 1892, John Arnold bought the freehold of Eastpark, and three years later he sold the whole house and estate to Rev. William Wykes-Finch, who began the task of restoring the house as a gentleman's residence.

Although North Wyke was a much grander house than Nethercott, however, the Arnolds used it as a farmhouse, and only the Nethercott branch of the family successfully made the transition to the landed gentry.  The transition seems to have begun with William Arnold (1782-1869), who described himself as a farmer in the 1851 census but as landowner in 1861. His son, Lt-Col. William Arnold (1836-1901) certainly styled himself gentleman, and his acceptance as a senior officer of the militia and later as a JP and Deputy Lieutenant shows that he was regarded as such by his peers. In 1871 he built a new house at Nethercott as sign and symbol of gentry status, but he was destined to be the only generation of the family to live in it. When he died it passed for life to his widow, and when she died in 1916 to their son, who let it in 1920 and sold it ten years later. He was also the last William Arnold of Nethercott in another sense, for he married late and produced only three daughters. Nethercott has since changed hands several times, and was bought in 1976 by the charity Farms for City Children.

Nethercott House, Iddesleigh, Devon

Nethercott, Iddesleigh.
A typical small country house of its date, built to the designs of an unknown but reputedly local architect for Lt-Col. William Arnold in 1871 at a cost of £5,000, and consisting of a tall, squarish gabled main block and a recessed lower service wing to the west. The house is built of rusticated rubble stone, with dressed stone for the windows, doorways and chimney copings. The main front faces south over the lawns, and has two full storeys and another in the tall gabled and dormered attic. 

Although there is a central entrance on the south front, the main entrance is on the east side, through a heavily decorated Jacobean-style porch, which leads into a hall with the three main reception rooms on the left and a study and staircase on the right. Two of the reception rooms have been knocked into one since the house was built, creating a single very large living room. The dog-leg timber staircase, which opens directly from the hall, is again in a Jacobean style, and is lit by a large window filled with pale tinted glass that illuminates the centre of the house. The most striking feature of the interior is the carved dado panelling throughout the ground floor rooms, which has a fanciful miscellany of birds, dragons and floral patterns to fill the rail and panels. It was carved in 1903 by William Arnold's sister, whilst confined to a wheelchair, and was installed by a local joiner. By comparison, the original timber chimneypieces, panelled doors and plaster ceiling cornices appear very plain.

The exterior and the ground floor rooms have preserved their Victorian character remarkably well considering that the house has been owned and used since 1976 by Michael Morpurgo's charity, Farms for City Children. The upper floors have been converted into dormitories and a classroom.

Descent: William Arnold (1782-1869); to son, Lt-Col. William Arnold (1836-1901), who rebuilt the house; to son, Maj. William Reginald Arnold (1865-1935), who sold 1931 to Capt. A.W.M. Budgett; sold to James Rothwell (fl. 1964); sold to Mr. & Mrs. Taylor; who sold 1976 to Farms for City Children.

Arnold family of Nethercott

Arnold, William (1782-1869). Eldest son of William Arnold (b. 1741) and his wife Christian Dunning of Honichurch (Devon), baptised 2 February 1782. Farmer (retired in 1850s). He married 1st, 21 May 1825, Elizabeth (d. 1836), daughter of T. Webber of Cudworthy, and 2nd, 5 March 1839, his cousin Jane (1797-1870), youngest daughter of John Arnold of Westpark, Iddesleigh, and had issue:
(1.1) Mary Bridget Arnold (1828-1901), baptised 20 March 1828; married, 5 May 1846 at Iddesleigh, Thomas Owen Arnold (1816-82) of Park and later of Cove Hill House, Sidmouth (Devon) and had issue one son and five daughters; died 3 November 1901; her will proved 19 December 1901 (estate £2,924);
(1.2) Lt-Col. William Arnold (1836-1901) (q.v.).
He inherited the Nethercott estate from his father; in 1851 he was described as a farmer of 200 acres but by 1861 he had handed the property over to his son and described himself as landowner.
He died 7 July 1869; his will was proved 17 July 1869 (effects under £2,000). His first wife died 26 May 1836. His widow died 2 April 1870; her will was proved 21 May 1870 (effects under £1,000).

Arnold, Lt-Col. William (1836-1901). Only son of William Arnold (1782-1869) of Nethercott and his first wife Elizabeth Webber, baptised 11 April 1836. Gentleman farmer and officer in North Devon militia (Lt., 1853; Capt., 1855; Maj. and Lt-Col by 1875); JP 1875, DL 1895 and County Alderman for Devon. He married, 13 October 1864 at St James, Taunton, Georgina Elizabeth (1844-1916), only daughter of John Christopher Easton of The Priory, Taunton (Somerset) and had issue:
(1) Maj. William Reginald Arnold (1865-1935) (q.v.);
(2) Margaret Mary Arnold (1867-1911), born 2 June 1867; amateur woodcarver, who made the carvings for the panelling at Nethercott House; disabled and wheelchair-bound; died unmarried, 16 May 1911; administration of goods granted 12 June 1911 (estate £279);
(3) George Ernest Arnold (1875-82), born 21 September 1875; died young, 21 September 1882.
He took over management of the 300 acre Nethercott estate from his father in the 1850s and inherited it in 1869. He built the present house there in 1871. At his death he left the house to his widow for life and then to his son.
He died 28 February 1901 and was buried at Iddesleigh, 4 March 1901; his will was proved 1901 (estate £11,214). His widow died 18 September 1916; her will was proved 8 August 1918 (estate £231).

Arnold, Maj. William Reginald (1865-1935). Eldest and only surviving son of Lt-Col. William Arnold (1836-1901) of Nethercott and his wife Georgina Elizabeth, only daughter of J.C. Easton of The Priory, Taunton (Somerset), born 28 August 1865. An officer in the 2nd Dorset Regt. (2nd Lt., 1888; Lt., 1890; Capt., 1897; Maj., 1898), he served on the NW Frontier of India, 1897-98 and in South Africa, 1900-02. JP and County Councillor for Devon, 1915. He married, 25 August 1915 at Talaton (Devon), Charlotte Jessie Mary (1890-1976), daughter of Rev. John Rawle Paramore of Iddesleigh, and had issue:
(1) Margaret Arnold (1916-2010?), born 13 June 1916; married, 1955 at Wells (Somerset), Lt-Cmdr John Paramore Charley (1891-1960) but had no issue; perhaps the person of this name who died 11 August 2010;
(2) Nancy Elizabeth Charlotte Arnold (1918-86), born 28 April 1918; died unmarried, 3 March 1986; will proved 7 July 1986 (estate £92,061);
(3) Ruth Mary Arnold (1921-2005), born 29 June 1921; married, 12 October 1955, Cecil John Dowding (1905-88) and had issue three sons; died 23 September 2005; will proved 10 November 2005.
He inherited Nethercott House on the death of his mother in 1916, but let it from 1920 and sold it in 1931.
He died 16/18 December 1935; his will was proved 25 April 1936 (estate £4,445). His widow died 17/18 December 1976; her will was proved 10 February 1977 (estate £6,163).


Burke's Landed Gentry, 1898, p.32; H. Meller, The country houses of Devon, 2015, pp. 698-99;

Location of archives

No significant archive is known to survive.

Coat of arms

None recorded, although Burke's General Armory mentions for Arnold of Devon "Sable, a chevron between three dolphins embowed argent".

Revision and acknowledgements

This post was first published 4th October 2015.

Friday, 2 October 2015

(186) Arnold of Milton Hall, Gravesend

This family are said to have originated at Framfield in Sussex in the 14th century, but later settled at Gravesend (Kent), where a John Arnold died in 1568. His descendant, Anthony Arnold, was mayor of the town in 1760, and was the father of George Arnold (d. 1816), a baker who made large profits from the manufacture of ship's biscuits for the merchant navy and was mayor three times, in 1796-97, 1806 and 1813. George's son, Robert Coles Arnold (1797-1866) was the first of the family to enter the ranks of the landed gentry. Although he was a member of the Gravesend corporation until 1853, he was never mayor, although he did serve as Chamberlain. He left Gravesend in 1856 and moved to a house called Whartons at Framfield in Sussex, where he became a JP for Sussex. He later built Heath House at Barming (Kent), where he died in 1866. 

R.C. Arnold had four surviving sons, who were all distinguished in very different fields. The eldest, George Matthews Arnold (1826-1908) became a solicitor and was the senior partner of a large London legal practice (later Arnold, Fooks, Chadwick & Co. He trumped all his ancestors by being mayor of Gravesend no less than eight times, and built Milton Hall to the designs of George Somers Clarke as a grand new family residence in 1873. Although brought up in the Anglican church, he and his wife converted to Rome in 1859 and he later became legal adviser to successive Catholic Bishops of Southwark and a Knight of St. Gregory. His wide-ranging interests included local history, and he built up a museum of local artefacts which was housed in several buildings in the grounds of his home.  He was succeeded in his legal practice and at Milton Hall by his son, Bernard Arnold (1862-1925), whose interests ran more to botany and drama than to antiquarian pursuits, and who sold off the museum contents in 1911 (many were acquired by Gravesend Library and Maidstone Museum). When Bernard died in 1925 the Milton Hall estate was broken up and sold off, and the house itself was demolished in 1930 to clear the site for building suburban houses. Only the lodge of 1877 survives today, much altered.

Milton Hall, Gravesend, Kent

Milton Hall, from The Building News, 1874
A red brick Gothic Revival house, designed by George Somers Clarke for George Matthew Arnold in 1873. It was written up in The Building News in 1874 and described as containing both a baronial hall and a reception room 40 x 24 feet and 34 feet high.  

Milton Hall, from a 19th century watercolour. Image: Kent County Council. Digitally enhanced.
The watercolour reproduced above depicts the romantic and picturesque house which the Victorians saw, with views over parkland to the River Thames, but photographs and engravings make it appear rather harder-edged. Somers Clarke is always an interesting architect, and he had a unusually broad palette of styles for an architect of his generation. The diapered brickwork on the porch and gables at Milton, giving the house a touch of polychromy, was a signature feature of his work, and can be found, for example, at his Foxbush, Hildenborough (Kent).

Milton Hall in about 1910.

The house was demolished in 1930 and Milton Hall Road was laid out over the site. Pine Avenue marks the line of the drive, and the eponymous pines were only felled in 1984. A much altered lodge, designed by Somers Clarke in 1877, survives on the western side of Pine Avenue.

Descent: built for George Matthews Arnold (1826-1908); to son, Bernard Davies Brithwald Arnold (1862-1925); sold after his death, in 1927, to James Sanders Brown who demolished 1930.

Arnold family of Milton Hall

Robert Coles Arnold
Arnold, Robert Coles (1797-1866). Son of George Arnold (d. 1816), and his wife Anne, baptised 11 April 1797. He inherited his father's bakery business, but also had a farm at Southchurch Wick in Essex. JP for Sussex in the 1850s. He married, 16 July 1822 at Hawkwell (Essex), Sarah (1802-89), daughter of Daniel Pizzey* of The Beeches, Rayleigh (Essex) and had issue:
(1) George Matthews Arnold (1826-1908) (q.v.);
(2) Alfred John Arnold (1829-35), baptised 11 March 1829; died young, 22 March 1835;
(3) Sir Edwin Lester Arnold (1832-1904), KCIE CSI, of Jacques Hall, Bradfield (Essex), born 10 June 1832; educated at Rochester Grammar School, Kings College, London and University College, Oxford (admitted 1851, BA 1854; MA 1856); principal of Deccan Sanskrit College, Poona (India), 1857-61; journalist on The Daily Telegraph from 1861 (chief editor 1873-89), poet, journalist and orientalist; Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society; author of The Light of Asia and many other poetical and literary works; married 1st, 4 January 1855 at Taunton (Somerset), Catherine Elizabeth (d. 1864), daughter of Rev. Theophilus Biddulph of Bristol, and had issue three sons and two daughters; married 2nd, 3 August 1868, Fanny Maria Adelaide (d. 1889), daughter of Rev. W.H. Channing, and 3rd, 1893, Tama Kurokawa of Japan; died in London, 24 March 1904; will proved 21 April 1904 (estate £6,417);
(4) Sir (Robert) Arthur Arnold (1833-1902) of Hyde Hill, Dartmouth (Devon), born 28 May 1833; educated at home and trained as a surveyor and land agent; a radical Liberal in politics, being a supporter of Irish Home Rule and women's suffrage; author of A history of the Lancashire cotton famine, 1864; editor of The Echo, 1868-75; social reformer; MP for Salford (Lancs), 1880-85; Alderman of London County Council, 1889-1902 (Chairman, 1895-97); JP and DL; knighted, 18 July 1895; awarded Hon. LL.D by Cambridge University, 1897; married, 1867, Amelia Elizabeth, only daughter of Capt. H.B. Hyde of Castle Hyde (Cork), who founded a scholarship at Girton College, Cambridge in his memory; died 20 May 1902; will proved 23 June 1902 (estate £26,999);
(5) Augustus Alfred Arnold (1835-1932) of Cobham (Kent), born 4 March 1835 and baptised 8 March 1837; solicitor; Chapter Clerk to Rochester Cathedral; Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London; married, 19 April 1862 in Cheltenham (Glos), Anne (1836-1914), daughter of William Haggett Richards of Axminster (Devon) and had issue two sons and two daughters; died 13 June 1932, aged 97; will proved 30 July 1932 (estate £70,241);
(6) Laura Elizabeth Arnold (1837-72), born 8 February and baptised 8 March 1837; married, 29 April 1858 at Framfield (Sussex), John Henry Biddulph Pinchard of Shrapnel's, Taunton, and had issue three sons and three daughters; died 9 March 1872;
(7) Emma Ann Arnold (b. 1839), born Jul-Sep 1839; lived latterly in a flat in Prince of Wales Road, Battersea (London); died unmarried after 1911;
(8) Sarah Ann Arnold (1844-53), baptised 7 February 1844; died young, June 1853.
He lived at Whartons, Framfield, Sussex and Heath House, Barming, Kent.
He died 14 May 1866; will proved 16 June 1866 (effects under £10,000). His widow died in Brentford (Middx), Jan-Mar 1889, aged 87.
*The name is also found spelled Pizzi and Pissey.

George Matthews Arnold in 1894
Arnold, George Matthews (1826-1908) of Milton Hall. Eldest son of Robert Coles Arnold (1797-1866) and his wife Sarah, daughter of Daniel Pizzey of The Beeches, Rayleigh (Essex), born 4 July 1826. Solicitor, 1847-89; an auditor for the Poor Law Board for more than 30 years and legal adviser to successive RC Bishops of Southwark. JP, DL and County Alderman (1889-1908) for Kent; Mayor of Gravesend (Kent), 1890-92, 1896-97, 1904-06 and a benefactor to the town; Chairman of Kent CC Education Committee, 1903-05; Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London and a keen local historian; he amassed a museum of local antiquities which occupied a series of buildings on the estate and which was dispersed by auction in 1911; and he also rebuilt the derelict church at Denton and the chapels at St. Catherine, Shorne and Dode. He was born into the Church of England but converted to Rome with his wife in 1859; Knight of St Gregory the Great. He married, 31 May 1847 at St Botolph Aldgate, London, Elizabeth Cotton (1828-1906), daughter of George Essell JP of Rochester, and had issue with two other children who presumably died in infancy as no record of them has been found:
(1) Alice Maude Arnold (1849-1923), baptised 26 October 1849; married, 27 October 1869, Thomas FitzGerald Callaghan CMG (d. 1881), Governor of the Bahamas, but died without issue, 1 August 1923; will proved 27 September 1923 (estate £30,294);
(2) Mabel Catherine Arnold (1854-1940), baptised 25 May 1854; educated at All Souls Convent School, Hastings; married, 1878, Charles Chadwick (d. 1913) of Pipes Place, Shorne (Kent), solicitor and had issue one son and five daughters; died 27 June 1940; will proved 3 September 1940 (estate £25,921);
(3) Beatrice Emmeline Arnold (1856-1933), baptised 25 September 1856; married, 13 July 1876, Edward John Fooks (1851-1920) of Langton House, Langton Green, nr. Tunbridge Wells (Kent) and had issue one son; died 29 April 1933; will proved 16 June 1933 (estate £28,322);
(4) George Charles Arnold (1859-66), born Oct-Dec 1859; died young, Jan-Mar 1866; 
(5) Bernard Davies Brithwald Arnold (1862-1925) (q.v.);
(6) Mary Chantal/Chante Elizabeth Arnold (1864-1949); married, 1886, Louis Chadwick (1861-1922) of The Mount, Gravesend and had issue three sons and two daughters; died 26 March 1949; will proved 22 July 1949 (estate £34,163);
(7) Irene Anne Dolores Arnold (1868-1957), of St. Catherine's, and later Mill House, Shorne (Kent); she gave the chapels of St. Catherines, Shore and Dode restored by her father to the R.C. church; died unmarried, 6 June 1957; will proved 23 August 1957 (estate £27,081);
(8) Magdalene Anne Mary Arnold (1870-1901), born Jul-Sep 1870; married, 6 September 1894, Humphrey Edward de Trafford (d. 1905) of Littlebourne, Dover (Kent) and had issue one son and two daughters; died 2 January 1901;
(9) Wulfhad Leslie Joseph Arnold (1873-1906), born 24 July 1873; died unmarried, 8 November 1906.
He lived in Gravesend until he built Milton Hall, Gravesend (Kent) to the designs of George Somers Clarke in 1873.
He died 28 May 1908; his will was proved 14 July 1908 (estate £176,892). His wife died in May 1906.

Arnold, Bernard (Davies Brithwald) (1862-1925) of Milton Hall. Elder son of George Matthews Arnold (1826-1908) of Milton Hall and his wife Elizabeth Cotton, daughter of George Essell of Rochester (Kent), born 9 January 1862. Solicitor with Arnold, Fooks, Chadwick & Co., 1884-1925. JP for Kent; Fellow of the Linnean Society; President of the Pinero Dramatic Club. He married, 5 May 1886, Mary Catherine (1865-1924), daughter of James Prendergast, and had issue:
(1) George Anthony John Prendergast-Arnold (1887-1944), born 5 February 1887; educated at Beaumont College; solicitor's clerk; served in WW1 as Capt. in King's Royal Rifle Crops; married, 30 July 1913, Gertrude Cholmondeley, second daughter of Rev. Charles Bayfield of Ambrosden (Oxon) and had issue one son; emigrated to Canada, 1929; died 24 April 1944 and was buried at Mount Hope Cemetery, Brantford, Ontario (Canada);
(2) Mary Cecilia Prendergast Arnold (1888-94), born Jul-Sep 1888; died Jul-Sep 1894;
(3) Dolores Veronica Arnold (1890-1931), born Apr-Jun 1890; married, Apr-Jun 1917, John Edward Vernon (1888-1943) of The Grange, Bishopswood (Herefs) and had issue one son and one daughter; died 20 June 1931; will proved 8 October 1931 (estate £5,112);
(4) Bernard William Arnold (1895-1918), born 25 January 1895; educated at Beaumont College and University College, London; served in Royal Field Artillery in WW1 1915-18 (Capt.) and was killed in action at Arras (France), 21 March 1918;
(5) Adrian Joseph Arnold (1896-c.1974), born 3 March 1896; educated at Beaumont College; served in WW1 with Royal Field Artillery (Lt.) and Royal Fusiliers; died about 1974;
(6) Francis Xavier Arthur Arnold (1900-74), born 1 July 1900; educated at Beaumont College; motor engineer of Lion Garage, Gravesend and Arnold Transport; died 25 January 1974; administration of goods with will annexed granted 3 June 1974 (estate £1,815);
(7) Valentine Mabel Catherine Arnold (1908-91), born 14 February 1908; died unmarried, 2 January 1991.
He bought Milton Hall, Gravesend from his father's estate in 1908 for £9,160. After his death the estate was split up and the house sold in 1927 to James Sanders Brown, who demolished it to clear the site for building.
He died 6 May 1925; his will was proved 24 July 1925 (estate £51,897). His wife died 29 January 1924; her will was proved 14 March 1924 (estate £573).


Burke's Landed Gentry, 1925, p. 38; obituaries of G.M. Arnold from local publications; ODNB entries on Sir Edwin Arnold and Sir Arthur Arnold;

Location of archives

No significant archive is known to survive.

Coat of arms

None recorded.

Revision and acknowledgements

This post was first published 2nd October 2015.

Thursday, 1 October 2015

(185) Arnold (later Coape-Arnold) of Ashby Lodge, Mirables and Wolvey Hall

Coape-Arnold of Wolvey Hall
George Arnold (1658-1705) of Soho was the grandson of a Dorset gentleman, Robert Arnold of Armswell. His father, as a younger son, had been sent to London to earn a living and may have been apprenticed to a London tradesman. George's own career is obscure, but he occupied property with extensive stabling in the parish of St Anne, Soho from 1696 onwards, and may well have been a cattle dealer like his son, George Arnold (1683-1766), who was operating his business from the same address in 1714. The elder George seems to have been moderately prosperous and was able to secure his elder son, Richard Arnold (1682-1748) a place in the civil service, where he rose to be Chief Clerk in the War Department and then Deputy Secretary at War, 1727-41. The salary and perquisites of such a senior office enabled Richard to buy a property at Reigate (Surrey), but his younger brother George made a larger fortune from supplying cattle and horses to the London market, and he was able to buy the Ashby Lodge estate at Ashby St. Ledgers in Northamptonshire in 1718 and to build a substantial gentry house there four years later. The fact that George obtained a grant of arms in 1725 suggests strongly that he was anxious to restore his family to the status of gentry, although his portrait by Hogarth (see below) depicts a pugnacious self-made man brimming with self-confidence (does anyone else see a resemblance to 'Del-Boy' Trotter?).
Frances Arnold by William Hogarth, c.1740
Image: Fitzwilliam Museum
His only surviving son, Lumley Arnold (1723-81) was given a gentleman's education at Oxford and the Inner Temple, and became a practising barrister; and Hogarth's portrait of his daughter Frances demonstrates that his daughters were correspondingly equipped with poise and the social graces.

Hogarth vividly portrays George Arnold as a larger-than-life character, but his son Lumley comes across from his will as a less sympathetic figure. He had only one child, his 'damnable and undeserving son' George Arnold (1753-1806), who nevertheless inherited all his real property. I suspect George earned his father's contempt because he had no inclination to follow him into the law or any other line of business, and much preferred a life of gentlemanly ease. A portrait miniature by Henry Edridge (see below) shows him as quite a dandy, with a sensitive face, and the year after he inherited the Ashby estate he was made one of the Gentlemen of the Privy Chamber to King George III, an appointment which must have been the result of friends at Court. His first wife was an heiress and brought him the Wolvey estate in Warwickshire, which must have helped to maintain his lifestyle, and after he married for a second time he bought a small farm called Mirables in a picturesque part of the Isle of Wight and extended the house as a seaside villa of the most fashionable kind. He was no doubt also responsible for remodelling his grandfather's house at Ashby Lodge, and although no documentary evidence appears to survive about his projects, he may prove to have been quite an enthusiastic builder. In the 1790s, when the fear of French invasion was rife, he played an active part in first the Northamptonshire Regiment of Gentleman and Yeomanry and later the Isle of Wight Volunteers, of which he was Colonel when he died in 1806.

George and his second wife had three sons, of whom the eldest, George Henry Arnold (1791-1844) inherited the estate when he came of age in 1812. Whereas his father seems to have lived mainly at Mirables towards the end of his life, George Henry seems to have spent most time at Ashby Lodge, although he did visit Mirables for holidays and indeed appears to have replaced the original thatched roof there with tiles. He married in 1817 and his wife bore him a single daughter and no sons. He did, however, have an illegitimate son, Henry Arnold (c.1816-58) born shortly before his marriage, and when he came to make his will he left successive life interests to his wife and illegitimate son (his daughter had already married James Coape by then, and had presumably been provided for through her marriage settlement). When his widow died in 1851, his natural son took possession of the estates, but his right to do so was at once challenged by James Coape, who brought a suit in Chancery alleging that under the will of George Arnold (d. 1806), George Henry had himself only had a life interest and that under the provisions of that will the estates should pass to George's 'right heir', who was the Coapes' eldest son, Henry Fraser James Coape (later Coape-Arnold) (1846-1923). In 1854 he secured a judgement in his favour and an appeal by Henry Arnold was dismissed in 1857. The loss of his estates and the legal fees he had incurred in defending them left Henry Arnold insolvent and seems to have broken up his marriage; he died penniless in Hastings the following year.

James Coape (c.1815-89) did correspondingly well out of the case. By 1851, when he instituted proceedings, his wife Georgeana (1817-49) was dead, and although he acted nominally on behalf of his son, who did not come of age until 1867, it was in reality Coape himself who took possession of the Ashby Lodge, Mirables and Wolvey estates. He also inherited his own family property at Goldhanger (Essex), which seems to have consisted primarily of a slightly gentrified farm called Vaults Farm. Four scattered properties may perhaps have been rather an onerous responsibility, however, and there were moves to simplify the holdings. Mirables was sold in about 1873, although Coape replaced it with a house at Ryde (Isle of Wight) which became his main home: at the time of his death he was Chairman of the Ryde magistrates court. Ashby Lodge was sold in the 1880s to Paul Hibbert of Bilton Hall (Warks), a half-brother of the 17th Earl of Shrewsbury, who further altered the house and built a Catholic chapel nearby. 

H.F.J. Coape-Arnold (1846-1923) was ordained as a Church of England minister in 1872, but in 1883, when rector of Yatton Keynell (Wilts), he went over to Rome and had to resign his living. It is not clear where he lived in the next few years, but on his father's death in 1889 he settled at Wolvey Hall, where he rebuilt the old house, which already by the 1820s was regarded as a farmhouse and unfit for gentry occupation. His father's house in Ryde was sold and he was left with just Wolvey Hall and the Goldhanger lands. He had a large family and a small estate and clearly the younger sons could not expect to receive much of an inheritance, so it should be no surprise that three of them emigrated to Canada, although one came back and another moved on to the United States. Three of the daughters also married and went abroad, and another became a nun. The eldest son, Cranfield Coe Henry Coape-Arnold (1873-1963) inherited the Wolvey and Goldhanger estates, but died unmarried and left Wolvey to his niece, Georgiana Mary Coape-Arnold (1906-87) and her husband George Edwin Burbidge. Their children, Richard Burbidge (who changed his name to Coape-Arnold in the 1970s) and Mary Freeman are the present beneficiaries of the family trust which now owns the estate.

Ashby Lodge, Ashby St. Ledgers, Northamptonshire

The Lodge estate is first mentioned in a manor court roll of 1519 and a description in 1612 suggests that original farmhouse may have been surrounded by emparked enclosures from the beginning.  A new house was built for George Arnold in 1722, and a painting by Nicholas Dall shows this as a plain but handsome squarish five bay three storey house.

Ashby Lodge, Ashby St. Ledgers, by Nicholas Dall c.1760-65. Image: Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge

Later in the 18th century the house was extensively remodelled and enlarged, but nothing is known about the architects involved or the dates when the changes were made. The original square block was given canted bays in the centre of the main fronts and a balustraded parapet, and completely refenestrated with three broad bays on each front. Either at the same time or a little later a large service wing was added to one side and in the mid or later 19th century an incongruous two-storey bay window was added to the entrance front. A Roman Catholic chapel was built close to the house in 1883 for the Hibbert family, and in 1890 Paul Hibbert was said to have 'much improved and enlarged the house at considerable expense'.

Ashby Lodge in 1912, from the north-east.

The estate was clearly landscaped in the 18th century too. The Ordnance Survey map of the 1880s clearly shows relict avenues approaching the house from the south and across the park from the east, as well as a large lake (which survives) to the north of the house.

Ashby Lodge from the Ordnance Survey 6" map surveyed in 1883-84.
The house was demolished by Lord Wimborne in the 1920s after he acquired the property to add to Ashby St Ledgers Manor estate. All that survives today are the former lodges east of the house on the A361 and part of the stable court. The lodges are 18th century, with an early 20th century portico and clubroom in between added by Sir Edwin Lutyens to turn them into a club house for Lord Wimborne's private golf club; the building has now been converted into a private house. The golf course was apparently laid out on the park of Ashby Lodge.

Ashby Lodge: the former gate lodges converted into a golf club for Lord Wimborne in the 1920s.
Image: Ian Rob. Some rights reserved.

Descent: George Arnold (1683-1766); to son, Lumley Arnold (1723-81); to son, George Arnold (1753-1806); to son, George Henry Arnold (1791-1844); to illegitimate son, Henry Arnold (d. 1858); by Chancery order to half-sister's widower, James Coape (d. 1889), who sold c.1885 to Paul Edgar Tichborne Hibbert (1846-1929), who sold 1919 to Ivor Churchill Guest (1873-1939), 1st Viscount Wimborne, who demolished the house.

Mirables, Niton, Isle of Wight

The house is one of a number of villas established in the late 18th and early 19th century in the area known as The Undercliff, where ancient landslips have created a Picturesquely tumbled landscape with sea views that extends for over six miles from south of Shanklin to near Chale. Behind the shoreline there are a series of cliffs and very steep wooded hillsides extending up to half a mile inland, between which the ground is romantically broken and irregular. The area offered many sites which, together with a salubrious climate, appealed to the Regency and Victorian builders of summer residences.

Mirables, Niton: the original farmhouse, perhaps after a first phase of improvement.

A romanticised view of the original Arnold Cottage, as depicted in an aquatint of 1810. Image: British Library

Mirables began as a 17th century farmhouse which appears in a romanticised aquatint of 1810 as 'Arnold Cottage'. The vertical topography depicted in this print is hard to reconcile with later views, and it seems that a great deal of artist's licence has been used in the depiction. By the time it was published, the original cottage had been extended for George Arnold by the addition of a thatched-roofed wing with a half-octagonal end surrounded by a verandah with a typically Regency striped awning. Like most of the early cottages ornées in the Island, this work is sadly anonymous, but it could be as early as 1791-94 and it seems likely that an architect of quality designed it. Nigel Temple has noted its similarity to designs by Robert Lugar, who designed the nearby and more famous Puckaster between 1812 and 1824, but if the 1794 date is correct it must be too early for Lugar.

Mirables from a print of 1812, showing the addition made ifor George Arnold.

The next view of the house is a print of 1823, which gives more of a feel for the landscape setting of the villa, and which appears to show that the original thatched roof has been replaced by a more conventional tile covering.

Mirables, from a print of 1823

Later 19th century alterations have removed much of its original charm but created a much more substantial house.The western part of the house, the original farmhouse, was rebuilt and extended in about 1875, with plain gables and mullioned windows, and the Regency wing was rebuilt on a larger scale in about 1895. As part of this work, a polygonal tower with a tall conical roof was added on the north side, and the original Regency veranda was echoed by a two-storey veranda with arches and openwork spandrels.  Inside the house is an 18th century staircase reputed to have been moved here as part of the 1890s works from a house in East Sheen (Surrey), where a number of the original large suburban villas were then giving way to streets of terraced houses (in one of which I grew up!). 

Mirables in 2011. Image: © Bob@wootton

Descent: George Arnold (1753-1806); to son, George Henry Arnold (1791-1844); to widow, Susannah Arnold (d. 1851) and then to his illegitimate son, Henry Arnold (c.1816-58); by Chancery order to James Coape (c.1815-89), who sold c.1873 to H.H. Hammick...

Wolvey Hall, Warwickshire

Wolvey Hall
A house was built on this site in 1676, and though it was radically remodelled by Henry Fraser James Coape-Arnold in 1889 it still contains a staircase and some panelling and quite a lot of the structure of its predecessor. The oak staircase is dated 1677, and consists of three flights separated by landings, with an openwork balustrade that is not yet of foliage but no longer of strapwork. It is continued to the second floor by a plainer 18th century stair, presumably also preserved from the old house. By the early 19th century Wolvey Hall had declined into a farmhouse, and an article in the Gentleman's Magazine says roundly that there is no gentleman's residence in the parish. The alterations of 1889 produced a regular but plain red brick gentry house of two storeys and an attic, with prominent bargeboarded gables and a narrow off-centre porch.  In the grounds, close to the road, are the ruins of Jacob's Well, dated 1707, with a little reclining river god.

Descent: William White; to daughter, Elizabeth (d. 1788), wife of George Arnold (1753-1806); to son, George Henry Arnold (1791-1844); to widow, Susannah Arnold (d. 1851) and then to illegitimate son, Henry Arnold (c.1816-58); by Chancery order to James Coape (d. 1889); to son Henry Fraser James Coape (later Coape-Arnold) (1846-1923); to son, Cranfield Coe Henry Coape-Arnold (1873-1961); to niece, Georgiana Mary (1906-87), wife of George Edwin Burbidge; to family trust, which still owns it. The hall was let to William Winterton under James Coape, and again from 1916-41? when tenants included George Travers Aldridge (fl. 1925-34) and Maurice C.L. Freer (fl. 1939).

Arnold (later Coape-Arnold) family of Ashby Lodge and Wolvey Hall

Arnold, George (1658-1705). Elder son of Richard Arnold (b. 1604) and his wife Sarah, born 1658. He married Anne [surname unknown] and had issue, with three other sons who died in infancy:
(1) Mary Arnold (d. 1716); married, 18 May 1693 at St Martin-in-the-Fields, Westminster (Middx), Hubert Gould (1668-1727) of Upwey (Dorset) and had issue; buried at Dorchester (Dorset), 8 October 1716;
(2) Sarah Arnold (b. 1678), born 19 and baptised 22 October 1678; married John Marshall of St Martin's-in-the-Fields;
(3) Anne Arnold (b. 1680), born 24 and baptised 30 September 1680; married [forename unknown] Young;
(4) Richard Arnold (1682-1748) of Reigate (Surrey), born 3 August 1682; a civil servant who rose to become Deputy Secretary at War, 1727-41; married 1st, [name unknown] and had issue a daughter; married 2nd, 8 April 1725, Judith, daughter of Sir John Shaw of Eltham (Kent) and had issue one son and one daughter; died 1748;
(5) George Arnold (1683-1766) (q.v.);
(6) Elizabeth Arnold; died unmarried.
He lived in Arnold's Yard, St Martin-in-the-Fields, London between 1696 and 1705.
He was buried 24 October 1705; his will was proved 6 December 1705. His widow was buried in 1710.

George Arnold, 1683-1766
by William Hogarth
Image: Fitzwilliam Museum
Arnold, George (1683-1766), Only known son of George Arnold (b. 1658) and his wife, born 6 and baptised 10 November 1683. Cattle-dealer*. He obtained a grant of arms, 1725. His portrait by William Hogarth is now in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge and breathes pugnacious self-confidence; it somehow comes as no surprise that Arnold was indicted for assault in 1749, when he was in his 60s! He married, 23/28 June 1711 in St Anne, Soho, London, Anne (1691-1741), daughter of Edmund Bromwich of Daventry, and had issue, with three other sons who died in infancy:
(1) George Arnold (1713-15?), born 20 and baptised 29 January 1712/3; died in infancy;
(2) Anne Arnold (b. 1714), born 27 February 1714; married, 15 April 1734 at St Mary Magdalene, Old Fish Street, London, Timothy Roote and had issue; living in 1781;
(3) George Arnold (b. 1715), born 13 and baptised 30 August 1715; died in infancy;
(4) Mary Arnold (b. 1716), born 4 February/21 August 1716; married Thomas Garnett; living in 1781;
(5) George Arnold (b. 1717), born 25 July and baptised 5 August 1717; died young;
(6) Katherine Arnold; died unmarried;
(7) Frances Arnold (b. 1721), born 6 and baptised 18 August 1721; her portrait (see above) by William Hogarth was painted c.1738-40; living in 1766; died unmarried;
(8) Lumley Arnold (1723-81) (q.v.);
(9) Richard Arnold (b. 1728), baptised 10 April 1728; probably died young.
He lived at Arnold's Yard, Upper St. Martin's Lane, London. He purchased the Ashby Lodge estate in 1722 and the manor of Barby.
He died 20 February and was buried at Ashby St Ledgers, 28 February 1766; his will was proved 5 March 1766. His wife died in May 1741.
* He is readily confused in the records with Alderman George Arnold (1691-1751), a London haberdasher who was one of the founders of Bow Pottery.

Arnold, Lumley (1723-81) of Ashby Lodge. Only surviving son of George Arnold (1683-1766) and his wife Anne, daughter of Edmund Bromwich of Daventry, born 30 April and baptised at St Anne, Soho, London, 20 May 1723. Educated at Queens College, Oxford (matriculated 1739) and the Inner Temple (admitted 1739). Barrister-at-law. He married, Anne (c.1720-74), daughter of James Burgess of Essex and had issue:
(1) George Arnold (1753-1806).
He lived at Arnold's Yard, Upper St Martin's Lane, London until he inherited the Ashby Lodge estate from his father in 1766.
He died 5 May and was buried at Ashby St Ledgers, 29 May 1781; his will was proved 25 May 1781. His wife died 12 August and was buried at Ashby St Ledgers, 20 August 1774.

George Arnold by Henry Edridge, 1793
Image: Fitzwilliam Museum
Arnold, George (1753-1806) of Ashby Lodge and Mirables. Only child of Lumley Arnold (1723-81) and his wife Anne, daughter of James Burgess of Essex, born 1753. Educated at St Edmund Hall, Oxford (matriculated 1771). Described in his father's will as 'my very dameable [sic] and undeserving son'. Gentleman of the Privy Chamber to King George III, 1782. JP and DL for Northamptonshire. Capt. in Northamptonshire Regiment of Gentleman & Yeomanry, 1794; Lt-Col. commanding S.E. Battn. of Isle of Wight Volunteers, 1806. Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries. He married 1st, 1 February 1776, Elizabeth (d. 1788), only daughter and heiress of William White of Wolvey Hall (Warks), and 2nd, 15 September 1788, Henrietta Jane (c.1757-1849), eldest daughter and co-heir of Gen. George Morison, Quartermaster General and had issue:
(2.1) George Henry Arnold (1791-1844) (q.v.);
(2.2) Edward John Richard Arnold (1794-1836), born 3 and baptised 24 February 1794; Lieutenant in the Army (15th Dragoons: Cornet, 1810; Lt., 1811; 12th Dragoons: Lt., 1811-14; half pay, 1814-27; returned to service 1827 and held local rank of Capt. in India) and served in Peninsula War, 1812-13 and India, 1827-36; married, 1814 at St Marylebone (Middx), Mrs. Elizabeth Ward; imprisoned for debt at Winchester, 1818; died at Meerut, Bengal (India), 31 August 1836;
(2.3) Rev. James William Arnold (1795-1865), born 20 July 1795; educated at Clare Hall, Cambridge (admitted 1812; BA 1816; MA 1819) and St John's College, Cambridge (DD 1843); ordained deacon, 1818 and priest, 1819; curate of St. Lawrence (IoW), 1818-26, Ubley and Burrington, 1826-31; stipendiary curate of Whippingham (IoW), c.1833 and Wardington (Oxon), c.1841-51; rector of Polebrook (Northants); married, 9 July 1822 at Cheltenham (Glos), Lady Mary Howard (d. 1873), third daughter of William Ferward Howard, 3rd Earl of Wicklow; died without issue, 25 June 1865; by his will (proved 11 August 1865 (estate under £20,000)) he left part of his estate for the maintenance of the family monuments in St Anne's, Soho, London and Wolvey church.
He inherited the Ashby Lodge estate from his father in 1781 and was probably responsible for remodelling and enlarging the house there. He inherited Wolvey Hall in right of his first wife. He also bought a small freehold estate called Mirables at Niton in the Isle of Wight in about 1791 and enlarged the house as a picturesque seaside villa.
He died 24 October 1806 and was buried at Niton (IoW), where he is commemorated by a monument designed by Henry Rouw. His first wife died suddenly, 10 March 1788, and is commemorated by a monument at Wolvey. His widow died aged 92 at Mirables, 17 September, and was buried at Niton (IoW), 24 September 1849.

Arnold, George Henry (1791-1844) of Ashby Lodge and Wolvey Hall. Son of George Arnold (1753-1806) and his second wife, Henrietta Jane, daughter of Gen. George Morison, born 4 November and baptised at St. Marylebone (Middx), 5 December 1791. Educated at Jesus College, Cambridge (matriculated 1808). JP for Northamptonshire and Warwickshire. He married, 13 May 1817 at Ashby St Ledgers, Susannah Blakeman (c.1791-1851) of Coventry and had issue:
(1) Georgeana Arnold (1817-49) (q.v.).
He also had an illegitimate son,
(X1) Henry Arnold (c.1816-58) of Whitmore Park (Warks), a Lieutenant in the Royal Marines and later a Capt in 1st Regt. of Warwickshire Militia; Vice-President of Daventry Horticultural & Floral Society, 1851; the expense of defending his inheritance in the Courts left him insolvent, with debts of some £37,000 (discharged, 1857); married, 15 November 1842 but apparently sep. by 1858, Catherine (1818-97) (who m2, 17 May 1870 at St George Bloomsbury (Middx), William Overell of Leamington (Warks), solicitor), second daughter of Richard Howson Lamb of Bragborough, and had issue (probably died young); died at Hastings (Sussex), 28 September 1858; will proved 15 January 1859 (effects under £20).
He inherited the Ashby Lodge, Mirables and Wolvey Hall estates from his father in 1806. At his death his estates were bequeathed for life to his widow and then to his illegitimate son, but Georgeana's husband, James Coape, successfully argued in Chancery that under the will of George Arnold (d. 1806), the estates must pass to their son; an appeal against the original decree of 1854 was rejected in 1857 and the Coapes secured the estates. 
He died 27 October and was buried at Ashby St. Ledgers, 5 November 1844, where he is commemorated by a monument designed by I. Wheeler of Reading; his will was proved in the PCC, 10 December 1844.  His widow died 25 April and was buried at Ashby St. Ledgers, 30 April 1851, aged 60; her will was proved in the PCC, 16 May 1851 and left her estate to her sister for life and then to her granddaughters, Julia and Charlotte.

Georgeana Arnold (1817-49)
Image: Fitzwilliam Museum
Arnold, Georgeana (1817-49). Only daughter and heiress of George Henry Arnold (1791-1844) and his wife Susannah Blakeman, born June and baptised at Ashby St. Ledgers, 1 September 1817. She married, 8 October 1840 at Whitwell (IoW), James Coape JP (c.1815-89), who was educated at Christ's College, Cambridge (admitted 1832; BA 1836; MA 1839) and was second son of James Coape of Goldhanger (Essex), and had issue:
(1) Henry Fraser James Coape (later Coape-Arnold) (1846-1923) (q.v.);
(2) Julia Henrietta Mary Coape (1847-1925), baptised 6 August 1847; married, 2 April 1867 at All Saints, Fulham (Middx), Maj. Colvin Stewart (c.1832-1903) of Cairnsmore (Kirkcudbrights.) but had no issue; died 4 July 1925; her will was proved in Scotland, 21 April 1926;
(3) Charlotte Claudine Georgeana Coape (1849-1920), baptised at Whitwell (IoW), 18 August 1849; married 1st, 4 February 1873, Alexander Colquhoun Stirling Murray Dunlop (1848-74) of Corsock (Kirkcudbrights.) but had no issue; married 2nd, 11 October 1882 at Yatton Keynell (Wilts), Gen. Sir Henry Dermot Daly GCB (1821-95) of Ryde House (Isle of Wight) and had issue one son; died 22 February 1920; will proved 2 July 1920 (estate £11,869).
After the expiry of her mother's life interest in the Ashby, Wolvey and Mirables estates, her husband successfully brought a case against her illegitimate half-brother in Chancery, and secured possession of the estates for their son. 
She died, presumably in childbirth, 10 August and was buried at Niton (IoW), 16 August 1849; administration of her goods was granted to her widower, 7 May 1861 (effects under £1,000). Her husband died 10 January 1889; his will was proved 23 March 1889 (effects £92).

Coape-Arnold, Henry Fraser James (1846-1923) of Wolvey Hall. Only son of James Coape (c.1815-89) and his wife Georgeana, daughter of George Henry Arnold of Wolvey Hall, born at Niton (Isle of Wight), 27 February 1846 and baptised at Whitwell (Isle of Wight), 13 April 1846. Educated at St John's College, Cambridge (matriculated 1865; BA 1872; MA). Ordained deacon, 1872 and priest, 1874; curate of Wellesbourne (Warks), 1872-75; vicar of Neston (Wilts), 1875-78 and rector of Yatton Keynell (Wilts) 1878-83, but then resigned the living and converted to Roman Catholicism. He assumed the name and arms of Arnold in addition to those of Coape by royal licence in 1898, and claimed to be co-heir to the baronies of de Morley, Monteagle and Marshal by virtual of his descent from Elizabeth Parker, aunt and eventual co-heir of Thomas Parker (d. 1697), Lord Morley. A Land Tax Commissioner for Warwickshire; originally a Conservative in politics, he publicised his transfer of support to the Liberals in 1906. He was Chairman of Nuneaton Board of Guardians, 1902 and supported an open-air meeting in support of Free Trade at Wolvey in 1909. He married, 8 January 1873, Mary Genevieve (d. 1937), eldest daughter of Rev. Charles James Cummings, rector of Cheadle (Cheshire), and had issue:
(1) Cranfield Coe Henry Coape-Arnold (1873-1963) (q.v.);
(2) Fraser Charles Coape-Arnold (1875-1965) of Leintwardine House, born 24 February and baptised at Wellesbourne (Warks), 17 March 1875; grocer and fruiterer at Malvern (Worcs); died unmarried, 17 November 1965; will proved 15 April 1966 (estate £10,049);
(3) Wolvey George Coape-Arnold (1876-1961) (q.v.);
(4) Mary Georgeana Edith Coape-Arnold (1878-1941), born 6 April and baptised at Yatton Keynell (Wilts), 28 April 1878; a nun of the Order of Notre Dame, Clapham Common (London); died 5 May 1941;
(5) Agnes Lovel Coape-Arnold (1880-1940), born 22 May and baptised at Yatton Keynell, 6 June 1880; married Charles Mortimer of Salisbury (Rhodesia) but had no issue; died 10 April 1940;
(6) Ralph Tresham Coape-Arnold (1882-1963), born 10 January and baptised at Yatton Keynell, 29 January 1882; emigrated to Washington state (USA), 1906 and was naturalised as an American citizen, 9 March 1921; employed as gas and electrical engineer and later as a photographer; married, 19 July 1919, Vashti (b. 1891), daughter of J.L. Large of Seattle, Washington (USA); died 17 August 1963;
(7) Gundred Beauchamp Coape-Arnold (1883-1965), born 28 October 1883; married, 12 December 1916 at Wolvey RC church, Arthur George Savill (1863-1939), son of Lt-Col. Samuel George Savill of Boleyns, Bocking (Essex) but had no issue; lived latterly at Leintwardine House; died 4 November 1965; will proved 11 January 1966 (estate £67,356);
(8) Henry Astley Coape-Arnold (1885-1974), born 14 August 1885; emigrated to Canada in 1900; married 24 August 1905 at Brandon, Manitoba (Canada), Theresa Maria Josephine, daughter of Thomas O'Flynn and had issue three sons; lived latterly in Victoria, British Columbia (Canada); died 24 February 1974;
(9) Aliva Edmiston Coape-Arnold (b. 1887), born 5 March and baptised at Wolvey, 27 March 1887; educated at Notre Dame Convent, Blackburn (Lancs); married, 12 July 1920, Frederic Bowker of Mowbray, Cape Town (South Africa) and had issue; died in South Africa;
(10) Avice/Avis Agnes Mary Coape-Arnold (b. 1889), born 11 August 1889; educated at Notre Dame Convent, Blackburn (Lancs); married, 7 July 1916, Harold Webb, but died without issue, 23 October 1918 in South Africa;
(11) Raymond de Newburgh Coape-Arnold (1891-1918), born 31 August 1891; served as Lt. in 6th Battn, South Staffordshire Regt. and Royal Air Force; killed in an aeroplane accident at Babworth (Notts), 26 June 1918; will proved 12 June 1919 (estate £346);
(12) Bertha de Warenne Coape-Arnold (1894-1982) of Leintwardine (Herefs), born 3 July 1894; educated at Notre Dame Convent, Blackburn (Lancs); Licentiate of the Royal Academy of Music; music teacher; JP for Herefordshire; died 31 July 1982; will proved 26 October 1982 (estate £329,781).
Following a Chancery decree in his favour, he inherited Ashby Lodge, Wolvey Hall and Mirables estates in 1857, although in practice his father occupied these properties; he also inherited property at Goldhanger from his father in 1889. Ashby Lodge was sold in the 1880s and Mirables c.1873. He rebuilt Wolvey Hall and in 1890-91 he added a R.C. chapel, which operated until his death, after which it was converted into a garage and a new chapel was built in the village. The Hall was let from 1916 and some 2,462 acres of the estate was dispersed by sale in 1918.
He died 10 July 1923 and was buried at Wolvey; his will was proved 9 January 1924 (estate £12,059). His widow lived latterly at Leintwardine and died 17 February 1937; her will was proved 30 June 1937 (estate £535).

Coape-Arnold, Cranfield Coe Henry (1873-1963). Eldest son of Henry Fraser James Coape-Arnold of Wolvey Hall and Goldhanger, and his wife Mary Genevieve, eldest daughter of Rev. Charles James Cummings, rector of Cheadle (Ches.), born 7 December 1873 and baptised at Wellesbourne (Warks), 11 January 1874. Educated at Cranleigh School. Vice-Chairman of Rugby District Committe of Warwickshire War Agricultural Committee, 1939-41; Chairman of Rugby Rural District Council, 1946-47 and of Wolvey Parish Council, 1949. He married, 6 April 1910 at Newnham Paddox RC chapel (Warks), Mabel Lee (1873-1957), daughter of Charles Forbes Buchan MB, but had no issue.
He inherited Wolvey Hall and Goldhanger from his father in 1923, but sold the latter.
He died 4 March 1963, aged 89; his will was proved 4 June 1963 (estate £68,407). His wife died 3 July 1957; her will was proved 1 October 1957 (estate £2,646).

Coape-Arnold, Wolvey George (1876-1961). Third son of Henry Fraser James Coape-Arnold of Wolvey Hall and Goldhanger, and his wife Mary Genevieve, eldest daughter of Rev. Charles James Cummings, rector of Cheadle (Ches.), born 31 October 1876. He emigrated to Canada in about 1894 but returned to England sometime after 1906. Served in Royal Air Force during WW1. He married, 5 August 1903 at North Norfolk, Manitoba (Canada), Eveline (1886-1968), daughter of Samuel Winterbottom of Manchester and later of North Norfolk, Manitoba, and had issue:
(1) Georgiana Mary Coape-Arnold (1906-87) (q.v.).
He lived latterly at Leintwardine House (Herefs).
He died 8 March 1961; his will was proved 22 June 1961 (estate £18,476). His widow died 24 March 1968.

Coape-Arnold, Georgiana Mary (1906-87). Only child of Wolvey George Coape-Arnold (1873-1961) and his wife Eveline, daughter of Samuel Winterbottom, born at Edrans, Manitoba (Canada), 23 April 1906. She married, 21 March 1941, George Edwin Burbidge (1902-80), son of Sidney George Burbidge of Leicester, railway worker, and had issue:
(1) Mary G. Burbidge (b. 1942) of Wolvey Hall; married, Oct-Dec 1969, John O. Freeman and had issue one son and two daughters; now living;
(2) Richard Coape-Arnold Burbidge (b. 1946) (q.v.).
She inherited Wolvey Hall from her father.
She died 14 November 1987; her will was proved 26 May 1988 (estate £438,834). Her husband died Apr-Jun 1980.

Burbidge (later Coape-Arnold), Richard Coape-Arnold (b. 1946). Only son of George Edwin Burbidge (1902-80) and his wife Georgiana Mary, daughter of Wolvey George Coape-Arnold, born 15 November 1946. Engineeer and later Undertaker. He appears to have changed his name from Burbidge to Coape-Arnold in the early 1970s. He married 1st, Jul-Sep 1968, Kathryn Lake and 2nd, 1988, Maureen Kisby (d. 2005) and had issue:
(1.1) Nicola Marie Burbidge (b. 1969), born Oct-Dec 1969;
(1.2) Stephen John Burbidge (later Coape-Arnold) (b. 1971), born 25 July 1971;
(1.3) James Courtney Coape-Arnold (b. 1974), born Jan-Mar 1974; married, Jan-Mar 2000, Jane Verdun Newberry (b. 1974) and had issue one son and one daughter.
He lived on the Wolvey Hall estate in 2011.
Now living.


Burke's Landed Gentry, 1850, i,; 1952, p. 62; P. Reid, Burke's & Savill's Guide to Country Houses, vol. 2, 1980, p. 187; D. Hall, The open fields of Northamptonshire, 1995, pp. 140-53; N. Temple, George Repton's Pavilion Notebook, 1993, pp. 77-79; D.W. Lloyd & Sir N. Pevsner, The buildings of England: The Isle of Wight, 2006, p. 252;

Location of archives

Arnold and Coape-Arnold of Ashby Lodge and Wolvey Hall: deeds, family and estate papers relating to Northants and Warks property, 18th-19th cents [Warwickshire Record Office, CR1101, CR2352]

Coat of arms

Arnold: Gules, a chevron ermine between three pheons or
Coape-Arnold: Gules, a chevron engrailed argent, gutté de poix, cottised or, between three pheons of the fourth.

Can you help?

Here are a few notes about information and images which would help to improve the account above. If you can help with any of these or with other additions or corrections, please use the contact form in the sidebar to get in touch.

  • Does anyone know more about the history of Ashby Lodge, or the dates when it was altered, or the architects employed?  I should be particularly interested to see a ground plan of the house if one exists.
  • Can anyone throw any light on the early development of Mirables? It seems clear that George Arnold had acquired it by 1791, but when did he enlarge the original cottage and who was his architect?
  • Can anyone supply any of the missing genealogical details about the earlier generations of this family, in particular the name of Richard Arnold (1682-1748)'s first wife, or the dates of death of George Arnold (1683-1766)'s daughters?

Revision and acknowledgements

This post was first published 1st October 2015 and revised 4th October 2015. I am grateful to Nicholas Molyneux for additional information.

Sunday, 27 September 2015

(184) Armytage family of Kirklees Park, baronets

Armytage of Kirklees
The Armytage or Armitage family (the spellings were apparently used interchangeably until the 1730s) were long established as yeomen in the West Riding of Yorkshire. In the late 16th century, the profits of farming and the wool trade and judicious operations in the land market enabled John Armytage (d. 1574) and his son, John Armytage (1547-1606) to elevate their status to esquires and to acquire the formerly monastic estate of Kirklees, where they and their successor, John Armytage (1573-1650) built a new country house as a symbol of their rising status. During the 17th century John (d. 1650) and his father held various minor Crown appointments, mostly to do with raising revenue for the King, but his second son, Sir Francis Armytage (c.1600-44) married the sister of Sir Thomas Danby, and may have been closer to the Court than other members of the family. His grant of a baronetcy in 1641 certainly marks a further rise in status, and when he died during the Civil War he was buried in York Minster. The family seem to have been Royalist in their affiliation during the Civil War, and Sir Francis died while with the Royalist forces who were beseiged in York in 1644 (although whether he was killed or died from natural causes is not clear), but his father avoided any active participation on either side. Despite this apparent neutrality, in the spring of 1644, when Lord Fairfax brought his Parliamentarian army through the West Riding to quash resistance in the local towns, John Armytage seems to have been put to considerable expense in the maintenance of the troops, and the Royalist Earl of Newcastle attempted to seize and regrant the Kirklees estate, although it was soon recovered.

When John Armytage (1573-1650) died, his heir was his grandson, Sir John Armytage (1629-77), 2nd bt., who had been a minor during the Civil War but who demonstrated his support for the Crown by raising a troop of volunteer horse for the King in 1660 and acting as a local tax commissioner thereafter. Sir John had a large family, but most of his children died young or unmarried, and he was succeeded in turn by three of his sons: Sir Thomas Armytage (1652-94), 3rd bt., Sir John Armytage (1653-1732), 4th bt. and Sir George Armytage (1660-1736), 5th bt, none of whom seem to have played any part in local affairs and all of whom died unmarried.  The 4th baronet had much the longest tenure at Kirklees of the three and seems to have had an interest in building, since he can be associated with a number of projects both at the Hall and elsewhere, in the early 18th century. Sir John's expectation was that he would be succeeded by his next brother Christopher (1658-1727) or by Christopher's son John, but when John died unexpectedly without leaving a family in 1731, Sir John realised with horror that after his youngest brother George, who was unmarried and in his 70s, the next heir to the title and estates was his Catholic cousin, Thomas Armytage. So averse was he to a Catholic inheriting Kirklees, that he rewrote his will to exclude Thomas (although he could not prevent the baronetcy passing to him) and instead provided for his brother George being succeeded by his third cousin, Samuel Armitage of Keresforth Hill near Barnsley, a safely Protestant exciseman who was a collateral descendant of John Armytage (d. 1606).

Samuel's unexpected bequest was saddled with the condition that he should obtain a baronetcy within two years, although this was perhaps then a less onerous condition than it would be later when criteria other than an ability to pay the requisite fees had to be met. The baronetcy was duly created on 4 July 1738 and Sir Samuel lived to enjoy the title and estate until 1747. He served his turn as High Sheriff of Yorkshire in 1739-40, but otherwise appears in the public record chiefly as a promoter of horse-racing meetings in the West Riding, an interest that was shared by several of his descendants.  When he died he was succeeded by his eldest son, Sir John Armytage (1732-58), 2nd bt., who was only fifteen. He was brought up by the guardians his father had appointed (his mother having died in 1738) and they schooled him to be a model Georgian gentleman. After Eton and Cambridge he went straight into politics, being elected as MP for York in 1754, and then departed for a relatively brief Grand Tour, in the course of which he visited various Italian cities in 1755 and had his portrait painted by Pompeo Batoni. He was clearly a hopeful and enthusiastic young man, and it was perhaps in this spirit that he volunteered to take part in an amphibious expeditionary force against the French channel ports in 1758, during the course of which he was killed. His untimely if romantic death seems to have caught the public imagination, and a number of memorial odes were written by poets to mark the event.

Sir John had been engaged at the time of his death, but not married, and his heir was therefore his brother, Sir George Armytage (1734-83), 3rd bt. who comes across as a more stolid edition of his brother, with less taste for the limelight. Although he held his brother's parliamentary seat at York from 1761-68, when pressed to stand again he firmly declined, citing his poor health and his dislike of London. His passion, like his father, was for horses, and he maintained a noted breeding and racing stable. He also remodelled Kirklees Hall to the designs of John Carr and William Lindley, and laid out the grounds with the assistance of Richard Woods.  Arguably his greatest success, however, was to marry Anna Maria Wentworth (d. 1788), a considerable heiress, through whom his children inherited the Woolley Hall and Hickleton estates and a considerable fortune as well. Most of this went to his youngest son, Godfrey Wentworth Armytage (1773-1834), who took the surname Wentworth in lieu of Armytage in 1789 to mark his considerable inheritance. Unfortunately, the bank in which he became senior partner collapsed in the depression of 1825 and he was obliged to sell his estates to meet his business liabilities and Woolley Hall passed out of the family. An account this estate is therefore reserved to a future post on the Wentworth family.

Kirklees passed to Sir George's eldest son, another Sir George Armytage (1761-1836), 4th bt., who was the third generation of his family to be a passionate racehorse breeder, and who seems to have had more of his uncle's enthusiastic approach to life. He continued his father's improvements to the house and grounds, and outlived his eldest son, so that when he died Kirklees passed to his grandson, Sir George Armytage (1819-99), 5th bt. As he was a minor at the time, his trustees let Kirklees Hall and Sir George lived mainly in London until about 1862, when he regained possession of the family seat and moved back in.  His heir was his eldest son, Sir George John Armytage (1842-1918), 6th bt., who seems to have eschewed a conventional education and pursued a career in engineering and business. By 1887 he was Chairman of the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway, a post he held for more than thirty years. After he inherited the family estate he threw himself into local public service and held many different posts, not least as Chairman of Halifax Rural District Council.  He was a keen antiquarian, and conducted excavations of the Kirklees Priory site and of Castle Hill on his estate, reaching conclusions which have broadly stood the test of time. He was also interested his own family and paid for the cataloguing of his family archives.

His heir was his son, Brig-Gen. Sir George Ayscough Armytage (1872-1953), 7th bt., who was a career soldier who fought with distinction in the First World War, was active in local Conservative politics, and rose to become chairman of the West Riding magistrates. During the Second World War, Kirklees Hall was requisitioned as a training school for the National Fire Service, and when it was handed back to the family in 1947, it was arranged that his son and heir, Sir John Lionel Armytage (1901-83), 8th bt., should take over the running of the estate. Sir John was divorced from his first wife in 1946 and married again in 1949, and when he died in 1983 the estate was left for life to his widow. Lady Armytage (d. 2008) sold the Hall in the late 1980s and it was converted for multiple occupation in the mid-1990s. She built a new and much smaller house, known as Priory Gardens, on the estate, which became her home. When she died in 2008, the estate passed to Sir John's only son, Sir Martin Armytage (b. 1933), 9th bt., who sold the estate in 2013, ending a connection of almost 450 years. Sir Martin is unmarried, but there are heirs to the baronetcy among the descendants of the younger son of the 7th baronet.

Kirklees Park, Yorkshire (WR)

In the Middle Ages the estate was the home of a small Cistercian nunnery, founded in the 12th century, whose buildings stood close to the present Home Farm. When it was dissolved in 1539, this house consisted only of the prioress and seven nuns, and excavations undertaken in the early 20th century to explore the site showed that it was always small, with a church about 80 feet long and a cloister just forty feet across. The priory has been persistently associated with the story of Robin Hood: according to legend, when the outlaw fell sick, he sought out his sister, who was prioress of the nunnery and asked her for medical assistance, but whether by accident or malice he died in her care. Feeling death coming upon him, with the assistance of his companion, Little John, he fired an arrow out of the window of the guesthouse where he was being treated, and Little John vowed to bury him where it fell. The story was known in the 17th century and his grave site has been marked since at least the early 18th century, with an inscription (conveniently recut in 1850) recording the date of his death as 1247.
The Kirklees Priory gatehouse. Image: Humphrey Bolton. 
Licenced under this Creative Commons licence

After the Crown granted the site to John Tasburgh and Nicholas Savile in 1544, development seems initially to have continued on the same site, and the building known as the Priory Gatehouse may in fact be part of this post-Dissolution rebuilding. The other surviving old buildings at the Home Farm site are medieval, 16th and early 17th century farm buildings, but there was at one time a gentry residence here, which came to be known as Low Hall in later centuries. It is not clear when this was demolished, but it was perhaps in the 18th century.

The earliest depiction of the Kirklees estate, published in 1669 as an illustration of the Robin Hood legend. The view places the old priory centre stage, with the new house (marked A) in the distance. In reality, by this date little if anything of the old priory survived.

In 1565 the Kirklees estate was sold to John Armytage (d. 1573), and either he or his son, John Armytage (d. 1606) begun a new house, the present Kirklees Hall, in the late 16th century.  The original building has been so much altered that its original form is now hard to discern, but it seems to have been a U-shaped structure, with stair-turrets in the internal angles of the U, one of which survives. Few other features of the 16th century have been preserved, but the south-west corner of the house has large mullioned and transomed windows of this period and a vast Tudor hearth, indicating that this may have been the kitchen. The east wing of the house also has what looks like a former porch-tower on the outward face of the house, which could be 16th or 17th century.

Kirklees Hall: the new north front built c.1610.

The 16th century arrangement is obscure partly because it was radically altered very early on. Soon after John Armytage (d. 1650) inherited in 1606, he built a new and rather grander two-storey E-plan north front, with short narrow wings no wider than the central porch, and identical decorated parapets over the porch and wings. This probably had simple cross-windows when first built: the current sashes and the doorcase are 18th century. From this time onwards, if not before, the main rooms were in the part of the house to the east of the new porch and the western part of the house was largely used as service accommodation. 

Kirklees Hall: the early 17th century hall screen.

John Armytage's new porch led into a screens passage in the traditional way, and his hall occupied the whole of the ground floor of the east end of the new front. The screen survives, with inlay panels, decorated colonnettes, and small statuettes standing against the balustrade of the upper gallery, but the other interiors have largely been replaced in 18th and 19th century alterations.

Kirklees Hall: the head of the John Carr staircase, photographed in the 1950s. Image: English Heritage
Kirklees Hall: the Carr staircase today.

A rainwater head dated 1705 on the south front records a further programme of repairs or modernisation, but the next major alterations of which anything significant survives were made by John Carr for Sir George Armytage (1734-83), 3rd bt. in the 1760s. Sir John Armytage consulted James Paine about the possibility of alterations at Kirklees in 1753, the year he came of age (Paine's drawings are among the family papers), but his brother brought in Carr instead. Carr created a new staircase hall with an Imperial staircase (which appears to be elegantly cantilevered but is actually supported on cast iron beams) that has a scrollwork balustrade, and which rises to a first-floor landing with an Ionic columned screen.  He also designed the back stair, passage and outside door, and he may have made other changes, although work was apparently limited to 1759-61. 

Kirklees Hall: music room redecorated, probably by John Lindley, 1777-80.
Further work on the house seems to have taken place at intervals throughout Sir George Armytage's tenure of the estate. In 1773 a local mason, Joseph Jagger, was paid for 'planning, surveying and measuring' at Kirklees, and in 1777, John Lindley (who had been Carr's assistant for some 20 years and had recently set up an independent practice) was consulted about further work on the interior.  He was probably responsible for redecorating some of the main rooms, including merging two smaller rooms west of the 17th century porch to form a new larger room, and the design of the first-floor Music Room above the 17th century hall, which has a fine plaster ceiling with an oval central motif decorated with musical instruments and swirling vines. Lindley may also have been responsible for the addition of a large service wing to the west of the house, built in the 1780s. 

Kirklees Hall from the north-west in the early 20th century.
The large service range of the 1780s, raised in 1903, is nearest the camera.

The 4th baronet continued his father's tinkering with the house, and there was further work to the designs of Charles Watson in 1806-08, and on the service accommodation after 1811.  The house escaped a Victorian makeover, but did undergo a programme of refurbishment between 1883 and 1901, as part of which the 18th century service wing was linked to the 17th century stables and coachhouse by a single-storey range, forming a courtyard at the rear of the house. Finally, in 1903, the service wing was given a extra storey and gables by R.J. Rogerson.

In the 20th century, like so many houses, Kirklees Hall entered a period of neglect and decline. During the Second World War the house was taken over by the Government and used as a training school for the National Fire Service. In the early 1970s, the M62 motorway was driven through the western edge of the park, necessitating the creation of a new entrance to the estate from the south. Following the death of the 8th baronet in 1983 the house was sold, and the family applied some of the proceeds to building a new, much smaller house (known as Priory Gardens) on a new site east of Home Farm. In the 1990s, the Hall was restored and converted into a series of dwellings, although the principal rooms form part of the largest unit, Carr House, which was on the market in 2015. The Armytages sold the rest of the Kirklees estate in 2013, ending a connection lasting nearly 450 years.

Priory Gardens, Kirklees. Image: Bing maps

The grounds and park of Kirklees Hall are well documented in a series of estate and landscaping plans from the mid 17th century onwards, and a Brownian landscaping scheme was first proposed in 1757 by Francis Richardson. Nothing seems to have been done to his designs, however, because of the death of his client, the 2nd baronet, in the following year. The 3rd baronet was a friend of John Spencer of Cannon Hall (Yorks WR) who employed Richard Woods to landscape his grounds. Woods visited Kirklees three times to suggest improvements in 1760-61, and is known to have submitted "A general design for the improvements at Kirklees", although this appears not to survive. However, as we have seen, the 3rd baronet turned his attention first to John Carr's alterations to the house, and it is only in 1766-70 that payments for realising Woods' scheme occur; the completed scheme is recorded in a survey plan of 1788. 

Kirklees Hall from the Ordnance Survey 6" map of 1894.

Woods set the Hall in an expanse of open parkland extending eastwards, dotted with large trees. Along the western side there are irregular areas of tree or shrub planting with indications of meandering garden paths. North of the house Woods created the present large walled gardens, and the new gate lodge, the access drive along the western boundary of the park, and the access drive into the park from the south east. The 1788 plan also shows the chain of ponds down Nun Brook (thought to have been reformed from a chain of monastic fishponds), but since there is no reference to making these in the accounts, they must post-date Woods' work.  Their similarity to his equivalent feature at Cannon Hall makes it likely that they were a part of his original scheme, but that realisation of this element was deferred until after the surviving accounts end in 1771. The 1788 plan also shows a number of curving walks and drives linking the Hall to both the walled garden and Home Farm, as well as along Nun Bank to Castle Hill and beyond to a possible woodland garden including Robin Hood's Grave. These walks are still identifiable in the landscape. The survey also includes a small pictorial view of the Hall as viewed from the north east across the pond between Kirklees Hall and the large walled garden. This shows the iron footbridge which was built across the pond to provide a formal link between the Hall and the central entrance to the walled garden. This footbridge was installed in 1769, and it attracted some notice when it was first built:
"A few days ago was finished by Mr. Tobin of this town [Leeds] a most curious bridge of one arch, six feet wide and 72 feet in span, made entirely of iron... It has also iron ballustrades, which are ornamented with roses of the same metal [and] may be taken to pieces at pleasure." [Leeds Intelligencer, 2 January 1770]
It was, unfortunately, dismantled around 1840, but has some claim to be the first iron bridge in the western world, as it was built ten years before the more famous and surviving Ironbridge at Coalbrookdale (Shropshire).

Armytage family of Kirklees, baronets

Armytage, John (d. 1574). Son of William Armytage and his wife Katherine, daughter of Henry Beaumont of Crosland (Yorks). A yeoman-clothier and wool exporter from Farnley Tyas (Yorks WR). He married Elizabeth, daughter of John Kaye of Lockwood in Almondbury (Yorks WR) and sister of Rev. Sir John Kaye, and had issue, no doubt among others:
(1) John Armytage (1546-1606) (q.v.).
He purchased the Kirklees estate in 1565.
He died 21 February 1573/4 and was buried at Farnley Tyas (Yorks WR); administration of his goods was granted to his widow and son, 27 March 1574.

Armytage, John (1546-1606). Son of John Armytage (d. 1573) and his wife Elizabeth Kaye, born 15 December 1546. Educated at Trinity College, Cambridge (admitted 1563/4) and reputedly at the Middle Temple. JP for West Riding of Yorkshire; principal collector of lay subsidies in the wapentakes of Agbrigg and Morley, 1594-95; joint Treasurer for Lame Soldiers in the West Riding, c.1599-1600. He married 1st, 1567, Emma, daughter of John Gregory of Kingston-upon-Hull and 2nd, 1583, Margery (fl. 1606), daughter of Richard Beaumont of Emly Park (Yorks) and widow of Henry Knight of Knight Hill, Lambeth (Surrey), and had issue:
(1.1) John Armytage (1573-1650) (q.v.);
(1.2) Gregory Armytage (c.1574-1653) of Netherton (Yorks); married Elizabeth, daughter and co-heir of John Savile esq. of Netherton and had issue one son and one daughter; buried at Thornhill (Yorks WR), 28 March 1653;
(1.3) Edward Armytage (c.1575-1643) (q.v.);
(1.4) Anne Armytage (d. by 1606); married Sir Hugh Worrall (b. c.1573), kt. of Loversall (Yorks), who moved to Co. Monaghan in Ireland, and had issue;
(2.1) Joseph Armitage (fl. 1606);
(2.2) Elizabeth Armitage; probably died young before 1606.
He inherited the Kirklees estate from his father in 1573 and probably began building the present Kirklees Hall. He also expanded the estate, buying property at Brighouse, Hartshead and elsewhere in the late 16th century.
He died in 1606; his will was proved 31 October 1606.

Armytage, John (1573-1650). Eldest son of John Armytage (1546-1606) and his first wife, Emma, daughter of John Gregory of Kingston-upon-Hull, born 1573. Educated at Trinity College, Cambridge (admitted 1591) and Middle Temple (admitted 1594). High Sheriff of Yorkshire, 1615. In 1644 he petitioned the Yorkshire Standing Committee for consideration of the expense he had been put to for the maintenance of Lord Fairfax and his army and of losses through this army, and he goes on to say that after the fight at Atherton his estate was given by the Earl of Newcastle to Sir Edward Widdrington, although he clearly quickly recovered it. He married Winifred (d. 1637), only daughter of Henry Knight of Knight Hill, Lambeth (Surrey) and had issue, with other children who died young:
(1) John Armytage (c.1598-1624), born about 1598; educated at Inner Temple (admitted 1618) and Cambridge (MA); married, 1622, Dorothy (c.1599-1683), daughter of Cyril Arthington of Arthington (Yorks) and had issue one son (died in infancy); died 1624; administration of his goods was granted to his widow, 6 October 1625;
(2) Thomas Armitage (c.1599-1624); educated at Inner Temple (admitted 1622); died unmarried, 12 May 1624;
(3) Sir Francis Armytage (c.1600-44), 1st bt. (q.v.);
(4) Elizabeth Armytage (d. 1639); married, 4 February 1626/7 at Hartshead, Sir John Savile (d. 1660), kt. of Lupset (Yorks) and had issue one son (died young) and eight daughters; buried at Horbury (Yorks WR), 14 January 1638/9.
He inherited the Kirklees estate from his father in 1606 and built the new north front of the house c.1610.
He was buried at Hartshead, 16 July 1650 and his will was proved in London, 27 January 1650/1. His wife was buried at Hartshead, 11 July 1637.

Armytage, Sir Francis (c.1600-44), 1st bt. Second son of John Armytage (1573-1650) and his wife Winifred, daughter of Henry Knight of Knight Hill, Lambeth (Surrey), born about 1600. Bow-bearer of the Free Chase of Mashamshire, 1632. He was created a baronet by King Charles I, 15 December 1641. Until his death he was an active Royalist, and his estate was sequestered by Parliament for his 'delinquency'. He married, 1629, Catherine (1612-66), daughter of Christopher Danby of Farnley near Leeds and of Thorp Perrow (Yorks NR), and had issue:
(1) Sir John Armytage (1629-77), 2nd bt. (q.v.);
(2) Catherine Armytage (1630-63), baptised 7 December 1630; died unmarried and was buried in York Minster, 20 January 1663;
(3) Francis Armytage (1631-99) of South Kirkby (Yorks), baptised 3 January 1631/2; married Mary, daughter of Robert Trappes of Nidd (Yorks) and had issue an only surviving son (Sir Thomas Armytage (1673-1737), 6th bt. (q.v.)); buried at South Kirkby, 10 August 1699;
(4) Elizabeth Armytage (1633-40), baptised 5 November 1633; died young and was buried at Hartshead, 20 November 1640;
(5) Thomas Armitage (1634-35), baptised at Hartshead, 30 December 1634; died in infancy and was buried at Hartshead, 5 October 1635;
(6) Anne Armytage (b. 1636), baptised at Hartshead, 1 March 1635/6; married Mr. Smith of London;
(7) Prudence Armytage (1637-41), baptised at Hartshead, 6 April 1637; died young and was buried at Hartshead, 19 January 1640/1;
(8) William Armytage (b. 1638; fl. 1660) of Killinghall, baptised at Hartshead, 4 October 1638; married Catherine, daughter of Robert Trappes of Nidd (Yorks);
(9) Mary Armytage (1639-40), baptised at Hartshead, 29 October 1639; died in infancy and was buried at Hartshead, 8 November 1640;
(10) Winifred Armytage (b. 1643), baptised at Hartshead, 9 February 1642/3; married, as his second wife, c.1667, Thomas Lacy (1628-85) of Longworth (Lancs).
He died in the lifetime of his father during the siege of York and was buried in York Minster, 12 June 1644. His widow was buried at Wakefield, 13 January 1666.

Armytage, Sir John (1629-77), 2nd bt. Elder son of Sir Francis Armytage (c.1600-44), 1st bt., and his wife Catherine, daughter of Christopher Danby of Farnley near Leeds, baptised 15 December 1629. He succeeded his father as 2nd baronet in June 1644, aged 14. Captain of a Troop of Volunteer Horse, 1660. JP and DL for Yorkshire; High Sheriff of Yorkshire, 1668-9; appointed a commissioner for raising several taxes in the West Riding, 1661-72. He married, 1651, Margaret (1634-95), second daughter of Thomas Thornhill of Fixby (Yorks WR) and had issue:
(1) Margaret Armytage (b. 1650), baptised at Hartshead, 24 September 1650; married, 27 May 1672 at Hartshead, Francis Nevile esq. of Chevet Park and had issue;
(2) Sir Thomas Armytage (1652-94), 3rd bt. (q.v.);
(3) Sir John Armytage (1653-1732), 4th bt. (q.v.); 
(4) Catharine Armytage (b. 1654), baptised at Hartshead, 7 April 1654; married, 19 November 1679 at Hartshead, Christopher Tancred esq. of Westley (Yorks) and had issue.
(5) Michael Armytage (1655-78), baptised at Hartshead, 20 March 1654/5; died unmarried and was buried at Hartshead, 7 February 1677/8;
(6) Francis Armytage (1656-78), baptised at Hartshead, 5 February 1655/6; died unmarried and was buried at Hartshead, 15 July 1678;
(7) William Armytage (1657-58), baptised at Hartshead, 24 May 1657; died in infancy and was buried at Hartshead, 26 September 1658;
(8) Christopher Armytage (1658-1727), of Brampton Biggin and later of Hartshead Hall, baptised at St Martin, York, 9 June 1658; married Rebecca, daughter of Thomas Moore esq. of Austrope and had issue one son (John Armitage, whose death in c.1731 caused Sir John Armytage, 4th bt., to rewrite his will); buried at Hartshead, 19 September 1727;
(9) Althea Armitage (1659-62), baptised at St Martin, York, 20 May 1659; buried at Hartshead, 3 May 1662;
(10) Sir George Armytage (1660-1736), 5th bt. (q.v.);
(11) Ann Armitage (1662-65), baptised at Hartshead, 21 January 1661/2; died young and was buried at Hartshead, 8 February 1664/5;
(12) Beatrice Armitage (1664-87), baptised at Hartshead, 8 December 1664; died unmarried and was buried at Hartshead, 12 January 1686/7;
(13) Charles Armytage (1666-69), baptised at Hartshead, 28 May 1666; died young and was buried at Hartshead, 11 May 1669.
He inherited the Kirklees Hall estate from his grandfather in 1650.
He died intestate and was buried 9 March 1676/7; a grant of administration of his goods was made 11 May 1677. His widow was buried at Hartshead, 10 February 1695.

Armytage, Sir Thomas (1652-94), 3rd bt. Eldest son of Sir John Armytage (1629-77), 2nd bt., and his wife Margaret, daughter of Thomas Thornhill of Fixby (Yorks WR), baptised 10 May 1652. Educated at University College, Oxford (matriculated 1668). He succeeded his father as 3rd baronet, in March 1677. He was unmarried and without issue.
He inherited the Kirklees Hall estate from his father in 1677.
He died in May 1694 and his will was proved 26 May 1694.

Armytage, Sir John (1653-1732), 4th bt. Second son of Sir John Armytage (1629-77), 2nd bt., and his wife Margaret, daughter of Thomas Thornhill of Fixby (Yorks WR), baptised 14 April 1653. He succeeded his brother as 4th baronet in May 1694. He seems to have been interested in building, and probably made changes to Kirklees Hall, c.1705 as well as enlarging Rastrick chapel, 1721 and altering Hartshead church in 1708 and c.1725. He was unmarried and without issue.
He inherited the Kirklees Hall estate from his elder brother in 1694. 
He died 2 December and was buried at Hartshead, 7 December 1732; his will was proved 22 March 1732/3.

Armytage, Sir George (1660-1736), 5th bt. Seventh and last surviving son of Sir John Armytage (1629-77), 2nd bt., and his wife Margaret, daughter of Thomas Thornhill of Fixby (Yorks WR), baptised 23 August 1660. He succeeded his brother as 5th baronet, 2 December 1732. He was unmarried and without issue.
He seems to have lived at Bramham and Mirfield (both Yorks WR) before he inherited the Kirklees Hall estate from his elder brother in 1732. Under the terms of his brother's will it passed at his death to their kinsman, Samuel Armitage (1695-1747) (q.v.).
He was buried at Hartshead, 24 April 1736; his will was proved 27 April 1736.

Armytage, Sir Thomas (1673-1737), 6th bt. Only son of Francis Armytage (b. 1631) of South Kirby (Yorks), and his wife Mary, daughter of Robert Trappes of Nidd (Yorks), baptised 31 July 1673. He was brought up in his mother's faith as a Roman Catholic, but although he succeeded his cousin, Sir George Armytage, as 6th baronet in April 1736 under the will of Sir John Armytage, 4th bt. (1653-1732) he was excluded from the succession to the Kirklees estate because of his faith. He was unmarried and without issue.
He died 12 October 1737, when the baronetcy of 1641 became extinct, and was buried at South Kirkby, where he is commemorated by a monument.

Armitage, Edward (c.1575-1643) of Keresforth Hill (Yorks). Third son of John Armytage (1546-1606) and his first wife, Emma, daughter of John Gregory of Kingston-upon-Hull, born about 1575. He married 1st, 26 October 1607, Elizabeth (d. 1616), daughter and heiress of Edward Hanson of Little Royd and 2nd, Jane (d. 1654), daughter of John Popley of Woolley Moorhouse and widow of Thomas Cutler of Fieldhead (Yorks), and had issue:
(1.1) Elizabeth Armitage (b. 1609), baptised 30 April 1609; married, 6 September 1629 at Hartshead, Thomas Beaumont of Whitley Hall (Yorks WR);
(1.2) John Armitage (1610-64) (q.v.);
(1.3) Anne Armitage (b. 1611), baptised 3 October 1611; married, 24 July 1630 at Barnsley, William Gamble of Blacker;
(1.4) Edmund Armitage (b. 1612), baptised 12 November 1612; died young;
(1.5) Mary Armitage (b. 1614), baptised 11 June 1614;
(2.1) Francis Armitage (1623-56); died unmarried and was buried 24 October 1656.
His was buried 3 August 1643 and his will was proved the same year (effects about £600). His first wife was buried 26 March 1616. His widow died 30 December 1654.

Armitage, John (1610-64) of Keresforth Hill (Yorks). Eldest son of Edward Armitage (d. 1643) and his first wife Elizabeth, daughter and heiress of Edward Hanson of Little Royd, born 1610. A small freeholder, farming his own land. He married 1st, 10 September 1635 at Halifax, Mary, daughter and heir of Matthew Whitley of Shelf (Yorks) and 2nd, 31 October 1642 at Almondbury (Yorks WR), Elizabeth (d. 1686), daughter of John Dransfield of Elland (Yorks) and had issue, possibly among others:
(1.1) Edward Armitage (1636-73) of Keresforth Hill, baptised 18 August 1636; died unmarried, 1673;
(1.2) Mary Armitage (fl. 1659); married, 1659, Henry Crowther of Elland;
(2.1) John Armitage (1646-c.1682) of Keresforth Hill, baptised 4 March 1646; died without issue, c.1681/2;
(2.2) William Armitage (d. 1680); married Elizabeth [surname unknown] (d. 1707) (who m2, William Collier (d. 1709)) and had issue two sons and one daughter; buried 8 April 1680;
(2.3) Cornelius Armitage (b. & d. 1657), born 21 April 1657; died in infancy and was buried 22 June 1657;
(2.4) George Armitage (1661-1709) (q.v.);
(2.5) Gervase Armitage (1662-91), baptised at Barnsley, 15 November 1662; married, 21 March 1687 at Cawthorne (Yorks WR), Priscilla (who m2, Richard Hartley of Cannon Hall (Yorks WR)), daughter of William Bosville of Gunthwaite and had issue two daughters (who died young); buried at Barnsley, 11 July 1691.
He inherited the Keresforth Hill property at Barnsley from his father in 1643. After his death it passed in turn to his sons Edward, John and George.
He died in May 1664, aged 54. His first wife's date of death has not been traced. His widow was buried at Barnsley, 15 March 1685/6.

Armitage, George (1661-1709) of Keresforth Hill (Yorks). Fifth son of John Armitage (b. 1610) and his wife, baptised at Barnsley (Yorks WR), 14 April 1661. A small freeholder, farming his own land. He married, 9 September 1690 at Barnsley, Magdalen (d. 1724), daughter of Francis Usher of Barnsley (Yorks WR) and had issue:
(1) Francis Armitage (b. & d. 1691), baptised 25 September 1691; died in infancy and was buried at Barnsley, 21 December 1691;
(2) John Armitage (1692-1748) of Keresforth Hill, baptised 22 November 1692; inherited the Keresforth Hill estate from his father in 1709 but after legal disputes was obliged to share it with the descendants of William Collier (d. 1709); married, 29 June 1723 at Barnsley, Lydia Rawson (d. 1743) but died without issue, 23 April 1748;
(3) George Armitage (1693-1713), baptised 14 December 1693; died unmarried and was buried at Barnsley, 4 December 1713;
(4) twin, Sir Samuel Armytage (1695-1747), 1st bt. (q.v.)
(5) twin, Hannah Armitage (1695-1740), baptised at Barnsley, 5 May 1695; married Francis Roper of Barnsley and had issue; buried at Barnsley, 13 November 1740;
(6) Elizabeth Armitage (1696-1751?), baptised 16 December 1696; married, perhaps 3 November 1728 at St Benet Paul's Wharf, London, Edmund Fryer; possibly the Elizabeth Fryer buried at St Mary Mounthaw, London, 13 November 1751;
(7) twin, Edward Armitage (b. 1701), baptised 24 July 1701; died young;
(8) twin, Francis Armitage (b. 1701), baptised 24 July 1701; died young;
(9) Magdalen Armitage (b. 1703; fl. 1724), baptised 5 February 1703; married, 29 September 1724 at Barnsley, Francis Naylor (d. 1760?) and had issue.
He inherited the Keresforth Hill property in Barnsley from his elder brother c.1681.
He was buried at Barnsley, 18 April 1709, aged 48. His widow was buried in the same place, 23 October 1724.

Armytage, Sir Samuel (1695-1747), 1st bt., of Barnsley (Yorks). Fourth son of George Armytage (1661-1709) and his wife Magdalen, daughter of Francis Usher of Barnsley (Yorks WR), baptised at Barnsley, 5 May 1695. Employed as a supervisor in the excise service in Wales in the 1720s. He was injured in a riding accident in 1733, but seems to have recovered, and in 1736 he was one of the gentlemen who collected subscriptions to support an annual horse-racing meeting at Halifax; he later entered horses in races at both Halifax and Wakefield. It is said that he adopted the 'Armytage' spelling of his name following a dispute which arose within the family from his succession to the Kirklees estate. He was created a baronet, 4 July 1738. High Sheriff of Yorkshire, 1739-40. He married, c.1722, Anne (d. 1738), daughter of Thomas Griffith of Llanfyllin (Montgomerys) and had issue, perhaps among others who died young:
(1) Rachel Armytage (1724-78), born 2 June 1724; married, 15 October 1743 at Hartshead, James Farrer (1721-91) of Ewood Hall in Midgley (Yorks WR) and from c.1760 of Barnborough Grange (Yorks WR), son of Oliver Farrer, and had issue three sons and four daughters; died 12 June 1778;
(2) Mary Armytage (1725-86), born and baptised at Oswestry, 17 September 1725; married, 24 April 1749 at Royston (Yorks WR), Rev. Francis Hall (1720-82) of Swaith near Barnsley, chaplain to the Marquess of Rockingham, vicar of Hartshead and rector of Thurnscoe, and later rector of Tankersley (Yorks); died 3 May 1786 and was buried at Doncaster (Yorks WR) where she is commemorated by a monument;
(3) John Armytage (b. 1726), baptised at Oswestry, 27 November 1726; died young;
(4) Sir John Armytage (1732-58), 2nd bt. (q.v.);
(5) Anna Maria Armytage (1733-92), born 29 September 1733; married 1st, 15 September 1763 at Walcot (Somerset), Thomas Carter MP (1720-65) of Rathnally House, Trim (Meath), elder son of Rt. Hon. Thomas Carter of Castle Martin (Meath), Master of the Rolls in Ireland, and had issue one daughter; married 2nd, 18 September 1766, Capt. John Nicholson (1724-82) of Balrath Bury (Meath), and had issue two sons; died 1792; will proved in the Prerogative Court of Ireland, 1793;
(6) Sir George Armytage (1734-83), 3rd bt. (q.v.);
(7) Samuel Armytage (1736-59), born 24 May and baptised at Hartshead, 30 May 1736; died unmarried, and was buried at Hartshead, 23 March 1758/9.
He inherited the Kirklees Hall estate from his kinsman, Sir George Armytage (1660-1736), 5th bt., in 1736, conditionally on his obtaining a baronetcy within two years. He may have been responsible for the creation of the monument known as Robin Hood's grave, where he is said to have partially excavated the grave site.
He died 19 August and was buried at Hartshead, 26 August 1747, where he is commemorated by a monument; his will was proved 26 September 1747. His wife was buried at Hartshead, 27 November 1738.

Sir John Armytage,
by Pompeo Batoni
Armytage, Sir John (1732-58), 2nd bt. Elder son of Sir Samuel Armytage (1695-1747), 1st bt. and his wife Anne, daughter of Thomas Griffith of Llanfyllin (Montgomerys), born 13 July and baptised at Oswestry (Shropshire), 22 July 1732. After his father's death, James Farrer of Barnbrough Grange, and Samuel Burroughs of Dewsbury acted as his guardians until he came of age in 1753. Educated at Eton and Trinity College, Cambridge (admitted 1751; MA 1753). He succeeded his father as 2nd baronet, 19 August 1747. A Whig in politics, he was elected in the interest of the Marquess of Rockingham as MP for York, 1754-58; he supported the Duke of Newcastle in Parliament. Alongside his Parliamentary responsibilities, he undertook a Grand Tour of Italy, visiting Florence, Siena and Rome (where he was painted by Pompeo Batoni) in 1755, at the same time as the architect, Robert Adam. In 1758, he volunteered to participate in the fatally unsuccessful amphibious expedition against northern French ports and coastal defences, and was killed at St. Cast. He was unmarried and without issue, although at the time of his death he was engaged to Mary, the daughter of Emanuel Scrope Howe, 2nd Viscount Howe.
He inherited the Kirklees Hall estate from his father in 1747. In 1753 he obtained plans from James Paine for remodelling the Hall, but nothing was done before his death, when the estate and baronetcy passed to his younger brother.
He was killed at St. Cast (France) 10 September 1758.

Sir George Armytage,
by Samuel Collins
Armytage, Sir George (1734-83), 3rd bt. Second son of Sir Samuel Armytage (1695-1747), 1st bt. and his wife Anne, daughter of Thomas Griffith of Llanfyllin (Montgomerys), born 25 December 1734. He succeeded his elder brother as 3rd baronet, 10 September 1758. A Whig in politics, he was a supporter of the Marquess of Rockingham, in whose interest he was elected MP for York, 1761-68 and although pressed to serve a further term he declined, citing his poor health and dislike of London, although he continued to be an active supporter of his party in Yorkshire. He was JP and DL for the West Riding and High Sheriff of Yorkshire, 1755; and a member of the Ackworth Foundling Hospital committee, 1769-73. He was a racehorse owner and breeder. He married, 10 April 1760, Anna Maria (d. 1788), eldest daughter and co-heiress of Godfrey Wentworth of Woolley Park and had issue including:
(1) Sir George Armytage (1761-1836), 4th bt. (q.v.);
(2) Anna Maria Armytage (1762-99), born 9 May and baptised 7 June 1762; married, 31 May 1787 at St. Marylebone (Middx), as his third wife, William Tatton Egerton (1749-1806), son of William Tatton and Hester Egerton but had no surviving issue; buried at Northenden (Cheshire), 15 September 1799; 
(3) Henrietta Armytage (1765-97), born 16 July and baptised 28 July 1765; married 1st, 11 September 1786 at St Marylebone (Middx), Thomas Grady (1756-88) but had no issue, and 2nd, 27 September 1790 at St Marylebone (Middx), Jacob Bosanquet (1755-1828) of Broxbournebury (Herts) and had issue two sons and two daughters; died at Bristol, 18 October 1797;
(4) Charlotte Armytage (1767-1845?), born July and baptised 9 August 1767; married, 12 April 1790 at St Marylebone (Middx), Rev. John Eyre (c.1758-1830), rector of Babworth (Notts) 1786-1830, archdeacon of Nottingham, and a prebendary of York and Southwell, and had issue three sons and one daughter; living in 1827; probably the person of this name who was buried at St George, Bristol (Glos), 27 December 1845;
(5) John Armytage (1768-1861) of Northampton, baptised 18 December 1768; married, 4 July 1790 at St Marylebone (Middx), Anne (1766-1840), daughter of John Harvey Thursby of Abington Abbey (Northants) and had issue one son and four daughters; died 25 March 1861 aged 92; will proved 5 April 1861 (effects under £30,000);
(6) Juliana Armytage (b. & d. 1771), baptised 19 April 1771; died in infancy and was buried at Hartshead, 24 September 1771;
(7) Godfrey Wentworth Armytage (later Wentworth) (1773-1834), born 9 May and baptised 11 June 1773; educated at Hipperholme Grammar School and Trinity College, Cambridge (admitted 1791); inherited the Woolley Hall estate and the bulk of his maternal grandfather's 'large fortune' and took the name Wentworth in lieu of Armytage, 1789; High Sheriff of Yorkshire, 1796-97 and of City of York, 1814; MP for Tregony, 1806-08; a Capt. in Staincross militia, 1798; employed Sir Jeffry Wyatville to remodel Woolley Hall, c.1807-08; senior partner in the Yorkshire-based bank of Wentworth, Chaloner and Rishworth, which failed in 1825, necessitating the sale of his estates at Woolley and Hickleton, and lived thereafter in London; married, 10 May 1794 at Hovingham (Yorks), Amelia (1771-1834), daughter of Walter Ramsden Beaumont Fawkes of Hawksworth Hall (Yorks) and had issue three sons and five daughters; died 14 September 1834; will proved in PCC, 15 November 1834.
He inherited the Kirklees Hall estate from his elder brother in 1758, and employed John Carr and William Lindley to remodel the house and Thomas Woods to lay out the grounds. He developed coal mines on his estates at Kirklees and Barnsley.
He died 21 January 1783; his will was proved in the PCY, March 1783. His widow died 21 March 1788 and was buried at Hickleton, 5 April 1788; her will was proved in the PCY, September 1788.

Armytage, Sir George (1761-1836), 4th bt. Eldest son of Sir George Armytage (1761-1836), 4th bt. and his wife Anna Maria, eldest daughter of Godfrey Wentworth of Woolley Park, born 11 January and baptised 11 June 1761. He succeeded his father as 4th baronet, 21 January 1783. High Sheriff of Yorkshire, 1791; commanding officer of the Huddersfield Volunteers, c.1794-1805 (Maj., 1795; Lt-Col., 1797). Hon DCL, Oxford University, 1793. Like his father, he was a keen racehorse owner and breeder. He married 1st, 13 August 1783 at St George's, Hanover Square, London, Mary (c.1761-90), eldest daughter of Sir Harbord Harbord, 2nd bt. (later Lord Suffield) and 2nd, 6 December 1791, Mary (1773-1834), second daughter of Oldfield Bowles of North Aston (Oxon) and had issue:
(1.1) George Armytage (1788-1800), born 2 August 1788; died young 'after a lingering illness', 17 May 1800;
(2.1) John Armytage (1792-1836) (q.v.);
(2.2) Mary Armytage (1793-1864), born 29 October 1793; married, 13 May 1815 at St George's Hanover Square, London, Walter Ponsonby Johnson (1789-1865) of Walton House (Cumbld) and had issue two sons; died 13 August 1864;
(2.3) Lt-Col. Henry Armytage (1796-1861), born 29 October 1796; an officer of the Coldstream Guards (2nd Lt., 1812; Capt., 1818; Lt-Col, 1828; retired on half pay 1840); married 1st, 12 June 1819, Charlotte Le Gendre (b. 1793), only daughter of Le Gendre Pearce Starkie of Huntroyd (Lancs) and had issue three sons (one of whom was Percy Armitage (1853-1934), the first professional party organiser) and three daughters; married 2nd, 26 August 1858, Frances Sarah (1812-87) (who m2, 28 July 1863, Arthur Pott of Bentham), daughter of Robert William Brandling of Low Gosforth (Northbld); died at Broomhill Bank, Speldhurst (Kent), 30 October 1861; administration of goods granted 19 December 1861 (effects under £800);
(2.4) Francis Armytage (1797-98), born 18 November 1797; died in infancy, 2 February and was buried at Hartshead, 6 February 1798; 
(2.5) Edward Armytage (1800-30), born 11 April 1800; educated at Eton and Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge (matriculated 1820); Lt. in 6th Native Madras Cavalry in East India Co. service; died unmarried 7 June 1830 at Ootacamund (India) and was buried there; commemorated by a monument at Hartshead;
(2.6) Henrietta Armytage (1801-64), born 28 February 1801; married, 2 November 1824 at Hartshead (Yorks), Lt-Col. Charles John Brandling (c.1798-1856), only son of Rev. Ralph Henry Brandling and had issue one son and one daughter; died 6 October 1864 at Salisbury and was buried at Middleton (Yorks); will proved 8 September 1865 (effects under £450).
He inherited the Kirklees Hall estate from his father in 1783. In 1789 he benefited under the will of his maternal grandfather, Godfrey Wentworth. At his death he was succeeded by his grandson, the 5th bt.
He died 14 July 1836. His first wife died 'after a long and tedious illness', 13 August 1790, aged 28 and was buried at Hartshead. His second wife died 25 July 1834.

Armytage, John (1792-1836) of Heath Hall, Wakefield. Elder son of Sir George Armytage (1761-1836), 4th bt., and his second wife, Mary, daughter of Oldfield Bowles of North Aston (Oxon), born 7 October 1792. Educated at Christ Church, Oxford (matriculated 1810). JP for West Riding of Yorkshire, 1831-36. He married, 2 October 1818, Mary (1790-1871), only daughter of William Assheton of Downham Hall (Lancs) and had issue:
(1) Sir George Armytage (1819-99), 5th bt. (q.v.);
(2) Capt. William Armytage (1821-72) of Knightleys (Devon), born 4 January and baptised 7 February 1821; an officer in the Royal Navy, 1835-72 (Lt., 1845; Cmdr, 1855; Capt., 1860); Superintendent of Pembroke Dockyard, 1871; awarded Legion d'honneur of France, 1856; married, 30 August 1860 at Uffculme (Devon), Jane Sarah (1817-1907), daughter of Samuel Hood and widow of Hugh Holbech (d. 1849) of Farnborough (Warks) and Capt. Sir Charles Hotham KCB (d. 1855), but had no issue; died 11 January and was buried at St Davids, Exeter, 19 January 1872; will proved 14 February 1872 (effects under £7,000);
(3) Mary Elizabeth Armytage (1822-97), born 8 April and baptised 18 April 1822; married, 4 September 1845 at Sandal Magna (Yorks), Henry Anthony Littledale (1810-59) of Bolton Hall (Yorks), barrister, and had issue four sons and four daughters; died September 1897; will proved 5 November 1897 (effects £22,401);
(4) Laura Harriet Armytage (1823-1903), baptised 7 September 1823; married, 11 May 1843 at Hartshead, Ven. Charles William Holbeche (1816-1901) of Farnborough (Warks), Master of University College, Oxford and later Dean of Westminster Abbey, and had issue five sons and five daughters; died 23 April 1903 and was buried at Farnborough; will proved 6 June 1903 (estate £1,196);
(5) Capt. Godfrey Armytage (1825-1908) of Carr Lodge, Horbury (Yorks WR), born 16 March and baptised 1 April 1825; an officer in the 6th Royal Regt. of Foot (Ensign, 1842; Lt., 1845; Capt., 1851; retired c.1852); Capt. and Adjutant of 6th West Yorkshire Militia, c.1854-56; Governor of HM Prison, Wakefield, 1864-81; JP for West Riding of Yorkshire from 1882; married, 6 February 1849 at Wynburg, Cape of Good Hope (South Africa), Charlotte Emily, daughter of Joseph Blackburn of Claremont, Cape of Good Hope, but had no issue; died 16 September 1908 and was buried at Ackworth (Yorks); will proved 21 October 1908 (estate £3,100);
(6) Emily Armytage (1826-46), born 26 December 1826 and baptised 15 July 1827; died unmarried, 13 August 1846 at Lytham (Lancs);
(7) Jane Frances Armytage (1829-40), born 20 May and baptised 5 July 1829; died young, 13 April 1840 at Marseilles (France) and was buried at Hartshead, 29 April 1840;
(8) Anna Maria Armytage (1833-81), born 5 January and baptised 7 April 1833 at Heath (Yorks); died unmarried, 22 February and was buried at Cobham (Surrey), 26 February 1881; will proved 28 March 1881 (effects under £16,000).
After his marriage, he lived at various addresses in Yorkshire, including Tickhill, Heath Hall near Wakefield, and Hawkesworth Hall.
He died in the lifetime of his father, 24 May 1836, and was buried at Clifton (Yorks), 1 June 1836; his will was proved in the PCC, 20 October 1836. His widow died 21 April 1871; her will was proved 26 June 1871 (effects under £12,000).

Armytage, Sir George (1819-99), 5th bt. Son of John Armytage (1792-1836) of Heath and his wife Mary, only daughter of William Assheton of Downham Hall (Lancs), born 3 August 1819 and baptised 20 April 1820. Educated at Rugby, Harrow and Oriel College, Oxford (matriculated 1837). He succeeded his grandfather as 5th baronet, 14 July 1836. JP and DL for Yorkshire. He married, 1 June 1841, Eliza Matilda Mary (c.1821-98), second daughter of Sir Joseph Radcliffe, 1st bt. of Rudding Park (Yorks) and had issue:
(1) Sir George John Armytage (1842-1918), 6th bt. (q.v.);
(2) Harriet Matilda Armytage (1843-65), born 11 July and baptised 26 August 1843; died unmarried, 10 October and was buried at Hartshead, 13 October 1865;
(3) Lt. Col. Arthur Henry Armytage (1845-1927) of The White House, Clifton, York, born 27 August and baptised at Sandal Magna (Yorks), 28 September 1845; Lt-Col. in Royal Horse Artillery; JP for Yorks ER; married, 24 June 1879, Katharine Harriet (1852-1938), second daughter of Ralph Creyke of Rawcliffe Hall and Marton (Yorks) and had issue one son (who died young) and three daughters; died 5 May 1927; will proved 23 June 1927 (estate £19,678);
(4) William Edward Armytage (1847-61), born 7 September and baptised 13 December 1847; died young, 1 December 1861 and was buried at Tunbridge Wells (Kent);
(5) Francis Reginald Armytage (1849-1907) of Harrow (Middx), born 9 July and baptised 8 August 1849; educated at Balliol College, Oxford (matriculated 1867; BA 1873; MA 1874) and Inner Temple (admitted 1869; called to bar 1873); barrister-at-law on north-eastern circuit; died unmarried, 9 December 1907; will proved 13 January 1908 (estate £23,048).
He inherited the Kirklees Hall estate from his grandfather in 1836 and came of age in 1840. Kirklees Hall was let from 1836-c.1862: for much of this time the tenant was Henry Wickham Wickham MP who was in residence by 1844. Sir George appears to have lived at his town house at 27 Cambridge Square, London while Kirklees was let; he also had a property at Sandal Magna (Yorks WR). In 1883 his estate consisted of 3,274 acres producing an income of £8,700 a year.
He died 9 March and was buried at Hartshead, 14 March 1899; his will was proved 10 May 1899 (effects £192,530). His wife died 2 March 1898.

Sir G.J. Armytage, 6th bt.
Armytage, Sir George John (1842-1918), 6th bt. Eldest son of Sir George Armytage (1819-99), 5th bt., and his wife Eliza Matilda Mary, daughter of Sir Joseph Radcliffe, 1st bt., of Rudding Park (Yorks), born 26 April 1842. Civil Engineer (in which capacity he worked in Spain, 1863-65); Director of Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway, 1879-1918 (Vice-Chairman, 1882-87; Chairman, 1887-1918); President of the Brighouse Town Hall Company Limited; Chairman of Halifax Rural District Council; Founder member and President of the Yorkshire Archæological Society; member of the Royal Commission on coal supplies, 1901. JP and DL for Yorks WR and York; High Sheriff of Yorkshire, 1907; Associate of the Institute of Civil Engineers, 1886; Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries; conducted archaeological investigations of Kirklees Priory and Castle Hill and edited several volumes for the Harleian Society. He succeded his father as 6th baronet, 9 March 1899. He married 1st, 11 May 1871, Ellen (d. 1890), daughter of Rev. Ayscough Fawkes of Farnley Hall (Yorks WR) and 2nd, 6 April 1893 at St Peter, Cranley Gardens, Kensington (Middx), his cousin, Mary Georgiana (1852-1920), daughter of Henry Anthony Littledale of Bolton Hall (Yorks), and had issue:
(1.1) Sir George Ayscough Armytage (1872-1953), 7th bt. (q.v.);
(1.2) John Hawksworth Armytage (1873-1944), born 19 May 1873; Asst. Inspector at Board of Trade; married, 8 February 1912, Everilda Frances (who assumed the name of Armytage-Creyke by deed poll in 1938) (1890-1977), only daughter of Ralph Creyke of Rawcliffe and Marton (Yorks), and had issue one son and one daughter; died 30 June 1944; will proved 15 February 1945 (estate £8,042);
(1.3) Winifred Harriett Armytage (b. & d. 1875), born 9 June 1875; died in infancy, 10 June 1875;
(1.4) Edith Beatrice Armytage (1881-1973), born 4 January 1881; JP for Buckinghamshire; married, 19 July 1905, Marjoribanks Keppel North (d. 1949), second surviving son of Charles North of Rougham (Norfk), and had issue; died 21 October 1973; will proved 13 December 1973 (estate £5,431).
He inherited the Kirklees Hall estate (about 3,500 acres) from his father in 1899.
He died 8 November 1918; his will was proved 22 February 1919 (estate £219,350). His first wife died 4 July 1890. His widow died 14 August 1920; her will was proved 21 September 1920 (estate £4,638).

Sir G.A. Armytage, 7th bt.
Armytage, Brig-Gen. Sir George Ayscough (1872-1953) CMG DSO, 7th bt. Elder son of Sir George John Armytage (1842-1918), 6th bt., and his first wife, Ellen, daughter of Rev. Ayscough Fawkes of Farnley Hall (Yorks WR), born 2 March 1872. An officer in the army, 1895-1922 (Capt. in 60th Rifles, 1901; Lt-Col. in Kings Royal Rifle Corps; Col. 1920; Brig-Gen.); served in WW1 in command of an infantry brigade (mentioned in despatches four times; awarded DSO 1917, CMG 1918 and Croix de Guerre). He succeeded his father as 7th baronet, 8 November 1918. JP for Yorks WR, 1920-50 (Chairman of West Riding bench, 1947-50). A Conservative in politics, in 1930 he hosted a large open-air rally for the party at Kirklees, which was addressed by Stanley Baldwin. He married, 12 July 1899, Aimée (c.1865-1955), third daughter of Sir Lionel Milborne-Swinnerton-Pilkington, 11th bt., and had issue:
(1) Sir John Lionel Armytage (1901-83), 8th bt. (q.v.);
(2) Rear-Adm. Reginald William Armytage GC CBE (1903-84), born 18 May 1903; educated at Royal Naval Colleges, Osborne and Dartmouth; an officer in the Royal Navy from 1917 (2nd Lt, 1924; Lt., 1925; Lt. Cmdr, 1933; Cmdr., 1944; Captain, 1946; Rear-Admiral, 1961); served in WW2 at Admiralty and Plymouth; Chief Inspector of Naval Ordnance, 1956-59; Vice-President of Ordnance Board, 1959-60; President of Ordnance Board, 1961-62; received Albert Medal (later George Cross) for the attempted rescue of a man under his command who had become overcome by fumes, 1928; CBE 1959; married, 27 October 1928 at Holbeton (Devon), Sylvia Beatrice, second daughter of Lt-Col. Charles Russell Staveley of Pamflete, Holbeton (Devon) and had issue three sons (his grandson, Hugh Anthony Armytage (b. 1955), the eldest son of Capt. David George Armytage CBE RN (1929-2015) is now heir presumptive to the baronetcy); died 9 November 1984; will proved 19 February 1985 (estate £9,907);
(3) Barbara Ellen Armytage (1906-94), born 24 March 1906; married, 3 June 1930 (div. 1949), Col. Henry David Makgill-Crichton-Maitland OBE (1904-70), only son of Cmdr. Coventry Makgill-Crichton-Maitland and had issue two daughters; died 12 December 1994; will proved 24 January 1995 (estate £125,000).
He inherited the Kirklees Hall estate from his father in 1918 and handed over the management of the estate to his heir in 1947.
He died 15 August and was buried at Hartshead, 19 August 1953; his will was proved 9 October 1953 (estate £5,387). His widow died 24 September 1955; her will was proved 26 November 1955 (estate £10,208).

Armytage, Sir John Lionel (1901-83), 8th bt. Elder son of Brig-Gen. Sir George Ayscough Armytage (1872-1953), 7th bt., and his wife Aimée, third daughter of Sir Lionel Milborne-Swinnerton-Pilkington, 11th bt., born 23 November 1901. Educated at Eton and RMC Sandhurst. Served as an officer in King's Royal Rifle Corps (Capt.). He succeeded his father as 8th baronet, 15 August 1953. He married 1st, 7 June 1927 (div. 1946), Evelyn Mary Jessamine (1908-2008), garden designer, daughter of Edward Herbert Fox of Adbury Park (Hants) and 2nd, 8 November 1949, Maria Margarete (c.1927-2008), only daughter of Paul Hugo Tenhaeff of Bruenen, Neiderrhein and had issue:
(1.1) Sir (John) Martin Armytage (b. 1933), 9th bt. (q.v.);
(1.2) Ann Armytage (b. 1928), born 14 August 1928; married 1st, 16 December 1948 (div. 1960), Francis Richard Anson (1926-89), elder son of Maj. William Alfred Anson of The Manor, Leamington (Warks) and had issue one son and one daughter; married 2nd, 20 November 1962 (div. 1971), Philip John Warburton-Lee of Broad Oak, Whitchurch (Salop), only son of Capt. Bernard Armitage Warburton-Lee VC, and had further issue one son; married 3rd, 3 July 1972, as his second wife, Maj. David Henry Featherstonhaugh (d. 1994) of Kinmel Park;
(2.1) Christina Mary Armytage (b. 1952), born 15 September 1952; married, Jan-Mar 1980, Richard H.P. Cornish.
He inherited the Kirklees Hall estate from his father in 1953 and managed it from 1947. At his death he appears to have left his widow a life interest in the estate; she sold the Hall in the c.1997 and moved to a new house in the grounds. 
He died 21 June 1983; his will was proved 21 September 1983 (estate £1,687,958). His first wife married 2nd, 1946 (div. 1950) Capt. John Samuel Pontifex Cooper Cooper (1912-98); 3rd, 1950 (div.) Lt-Col. John Warwick Tainton Wooldridge (d. 1973); and 4th, 1960, her second husband. His widow died 4 April 2008; her will was proved 13 March 2009.

Armytage, Sir (John) Martin (b. 1933), 9th bt. Only son of Sir John Lionel Armytage (1901-83), 8th bt., and his first wife, Evelyn Mary Jessamine, daughter of Edward Herbert Fox of Adbury Park (Hants), born 26 February 1933. Educated at Eton and Worcester College, Oxford. He succeeded his father as 9th baronet, 21 June 1983. Director of Wolsey Lodges Ltd., 1991-94. He is unmarried and without issue.
He inherited the Kirklees Hall estate from his father in 1983 subject to his stepmother's life interest, but sold it in 2013. In 2013 he lived in Cheltenham (Glos).
Now living.


Burke's Peerage, Baronetage & Knightage, 1967, pp. 101-02; Miscellanea Genealogical et Heraldica, ii, 1876, pp. 86-94; C. Jackson (ed), Yorkshire Diaries and Autobiographies, 1877, p. 322; J. Wilkinson, Worthies, families and celebrities of Barnsley and district, 1883, pp. 124-36; Sir N. Pevsner & E. Radcliffe, The buildings of England: Yorkshire - West Riding, 2nd edn., 1967, p. 292; D. Nortcliffe, 'The restyling of Kirklees Hall, 1753-90', Transactions of Halifax Antiquarian Society, 1982; G. Sheeran, Landscape gardens in West Yorkshire 1680-1880, 1990, p. 54; I.M. Middleton, The developing pattern of horse racing in Yorkshire, 1700-49, De Montfort Univ. PhD thesis, 2000; F. Cowell, Richard Woods 1715-93: Master of the Pleasure Garden, 2009, pp. 212-13; Who's Who, 2013;;;

Location of archives

Armtage family of Kirklees Hall, baronets: deeds, manorial, estate and family papers, 12th-20th cents, including plans by James Paine, 1753 and William Lindley, 1777 [West Yorkshire Archive Service, Halifax, KE, KM, KMA, KMC, MISC:808, MISC:990]; estate papers, 19th-20th cents [Private Collection]
Armytage, Sir George (1660-1736), 5th bt.: accounts, c.1696-1730 [Lincolnshire Archives, MM14]

Coat of arms

Gules, a lion's head erased between three cross crosslets argent.

Can you help?

Here are a few notes about information and images which would help to improve the account above. If you can help with any of these or with other additions or corrections, please use the contact form in the sidebar to get in touch.

  • I have been unable to find a modern and detailed archaeological analysis of the development of Kirklees Hall, although it seems likely that one was prepared when the house was restored and divided into units in the 1990s. If anyone can supply such a study, I should be very interested to see it.
  • Can anyone supply images of further family portraits of the Armytage family?
  • Although it has been possible to trace quite a lot of genealogical information for this family, much of this is taken from extracts from parish and diocesan records published in the 19th century rather than directly from original sources, and may therefore contain errors. Please let me know if you can spot any errors or fill in any of the missing information.

Revision and acknowledgements

This post was first published 27th September 2015.