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Field Visit

Date 15 September 2009

Event ID 959606

Category Recording

Type Field Visit


The garden temple or summerhouse is situated 50m west of the bungalow on the site of Hatton House (NT16NW 5.00). It is a rectangular building measuring 5m by 3m and is 3.3m high. Built of sandstone, it has a concrete-covered flat roof. The principal (south) elevation is dressed ashlar, and the side and rear walls are rubblestone. The segmental entrance arch is 2.5m wide and 2.5m high and the keystone is embossed with a Lauderdale monogram, this is an oval cartouche flanked by two large feathers, and surmounted by an earl’s coronet. The device on the cartouche is a pair of tasselled objects arranged in an inverted V, or, conceivably an opposed pair of decorative letter Ls; the exact meaning of this is unknown. Fluted Ionic pilasters frame the opening and a moulded cornice runs along the top of the wall. Inside, the room is vaulted and faced with dressed ashlar. It has 0.6m-square blind windows with fluted architraves set into the east and west walls. A 0.95m high and 0.8m wide blind window is set back into the north wall; this has been fitted with a timber frame and an iron door, but it is empty. A loose block from the façade, now inside the building, is inscribed ANNO DOM MDCCIIII (i.e. 1704); this is said to be the latest carved date at the site.

Although internally the structure appeared sound, the south-east corner of the rubble wall has suffered significant collapse. On the front elevation, several blocks are unstable, particularly those of the architectural moulding along the top. Several blocks have fallen from the front elevation at the south-east corner, and these have been moved inside. The cement covering of the roof appears to be poorly attached.

Archaeological Services Durham University, 15 September 2009. OASIS-id: archaeol3-64466

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