Ridley Hall, Northumberland

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Ridley Hall
Ridley Hall is located in Northumberland
Ridley Hall

 Ridley Hall shown within Northumberland
OS grid referenceNY794640
List of places: UK • England • Northumberland
 
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Coordinates: 54°58′15″N 2°19′18″W / 54.970883°N 2.321679°W / 54.970883; -2.321679

Ridley Hall
Ridley Hall is located in Northumberland
Ridley Hall

 Ridley Hall shown within Northumberland
OS grid referenceNY794640
List of places: UK • England • Northumberland

Ridley Hall is an 18th-century country house, now a residential and conference centre, at Bardon Mill, Northumberland. It is a Grade II listed building[1]

A 16th-century house on the site was owned by the Ridley family of Willimoteswick.[2] It was acquired by the Lowes family in the late 17th century[2] and was replaced in 1743 with a new Georgian style mansion.[1]

The death in 1795 of John Lowes (High Sheriff of Northumberland in 1790) was followed by that of his son William Cornforth Lowes in 1810 and of his brother in 1812 and in 1818 the house was sold to Thomas Bates of Halton Castle, Northumberland.[3]

In 1830 John Davidson (High Sheriff in 1839) a cousin and beneficiary of the will of William Cornforth Lowes repurchased the house[2] and made substantial improvements to the property. He married Susan Jessup a daughter of the 9th Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne, who on her death bequeathed the estate to John Bowes an illegitimate son of John Bowes, 10th Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne.[3]

The house was rebuilt with a new main block in a neo Tudor style in 1891 by architect Horatio Adamson for Frances Bowes-Lyon.[4] The 18th century west wing became the domestic service wing.

The Bowes-Lyon family were not often resident and in the 20th century the house was sold to Rev EA Evans and was converted to a preparatory school.[3] In the mid 60's it joined forces with Featherstone Prep School from nearby Haltwhistle. In late 60's lack of numbers forced the closure. The Rev E.A. Evans retired in 1967 on the closure of the school. It was then purchased by Northern Counties College of Long Benton, Newcastle upon Tyne and converted into a teacher training college for 60+ 1st year students. Now the house is the boarding wing of Haydon Bridge High School for students who live beyond Otterburn and is directed by Mr S Sand who is part of the school staff. During weekends and school holidays, when boarders have gone home, the hall is open for weddings and conferences, but is not open to the general public.[5]

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