Stoke-on-Trent - photo of the week

contents: 2008 photos

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The Loggia, Trentham Gardens

The Loggia, Trentham Gardens

Loggia is the name given to an architectural feature, originally of Italian design, which is often a gallery generally on the ground level, or sometimes higher, on the facade of a building and open to the air on one side, where it is supported by columns or pierced openings in the wall. In particular, Brunelleschi featured a loggia at the front of the Ospedale degli Innocenti (Hospital of the Innocents) in Florence, Italy.
Trentham was the seat of the Duke of Sutherland but today only a few fragments of the last great house remain. The first house at Trentham was built on the site of an Augustinian Priory, which was founded about 1150. Following the Dissolution of the Monasteries the site was purchased by James Leveson in 1540. The earliest picture of a house there dates from 1686. It is known to have been damaged in the Civil War when the family were Royalists. The next development was in the early 18th century with a house of nine bays by Francis Smith.

The house and grounds were modified by Henry Holland and Capability Brown in the period from 1768-1778 with the house being extended from nine to fifteen bays. The house was altered again in 1810.

The final major modification was by Sir Charles Barry, the architect of the House of Commons. He worked on the hall between 1834 and 1849 and the cost was 260,000.

However, the family did not want the hall by the early 20th century and moved out in 1907. One reason was that the river Trent had become very polluted with sewage from the Potteries from the 1860s. In addition, like all the landed families, the Sutherlands were not making as much money from agriculture and land was being sold. Moreover the land no longer had the political importance for securing votes as the number of voters increased with successive reforms of parliament. Trentham was used by Disraeli in his book Lothair, where it appears at Brentham.

on the architecture of Trentham Hall