16th December 15

The History of Adlington Hall

Adlington Hall has been home to more than its fair share of change over the years. The walls of the hall have seen world-renowned music talent, hidden art, battles, picturesque gardens and a more than adequate number of tales around romance and desire. All of which have changed and sculpted the hall into the high class and bespoke building it is today.

Renowned Musical Prowess

Many people know that Adlington hall houses a magnificent organ that has survived through the ages but only a fine number of people know the true story behind the organ and the prestige it holds.

The organ itself was created in the late 17th century and has stood proudly in the same position since its creation, making it a representation of the prestigious nature of the hall and its grounds. It is thought that the world-renowned George Frederick Handel composed “The Harmonious Blacksmith” on this organ; this in turn makes the organ a significant tool in the evolution of classic music in the Georgian period.

The organ to this day has been restored but still remains completely built up from the original parts. It was restored in 1959 due to some dents in the organ pipes themselves and is otherwise still in the exact same condition of when it was completed in the late 1700’s. The Organ is in the best condition of any other remaining instrument from that era.

Hidden Art

The West and North walls of the Great hall have huge pieces of art that run the length of the wall. However, this was not always the case. This beautiful art was created in late 16th century or the early 17th century but had plaster walls built just in front of it to be able to protect it if the building was to become damaged in the civil war.

Around 180 years on a young boy, playing shuttlecock against a wall damaged some of the plaster. Luckily, for the child’s wellbeing, the damaged plaster revealed an array of strong and deep colours underneath. The family soon began to rip the plaster down only to discover the artwork still beautifully intact beneath. This very art is the same high quality fine art that you see on the walls of the Great Hall today.

Intense Sieges

During the British Civil War between the Royalist and the Parliamentarians, the hall was put to defensive use with a royalist garrison holding the hall under the control of Colonel Thomas Legh. There were holes punctured in the large wooden doors at the entrance to mount muskets and the moat was used for defensive uses to no avail. The Great Hall was taken twice during the Civil War, the first time was in 1642 and the second was 1644.

The first time the hall was taken by the Parliamentarians, it was recaptured swiftly in a push from Royalist forces. However, on the second occasion it was held until the end of the Civil War before being returned in 1656 to the Legh family in a lesser state. Colonel Thomas Legh then began restoration work on the north front of the building after it had suffered damage from the sieges and years of neglect.

Picturesque Gardens

The gardens seem on first glance as if they would have taken hundreds of years to perfect into the beautifully laid out piece of art they are today. However, they are one of the more recent additions to the hall having been sculpted by Charles Legh in the mid 18th century.  The gardens since seen change with upkeep and addition of pieces of art; there has even been some rarer plants and trees such as the Cedars of Lebanon and the Redwoods that have been placed in the gardens.

The aesthetics of the garden are further enforced upon you in the summer when the rose garden comes alive with an array of reds and pinks. There is even the carpet of blue bells that bloom in May and create a beautiful purple coverage throughout the southern areas of the garden.

It is hard to believe that such an amazing and breath-taking hall has such an amazing array of stories, tales and changes in its history through time.

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