Welcome to Our Home

Image by Javan Liam

We both fell in love with Goldsborough Hall back in 2005 when we were lucky enough to buy the derelict hall and save it from the developers. We were then faced with the huge task of restoring the building and grounds to their former glory.

Built in c1620 for Sir Richard Hutton, acting Lord Chief Justice, the hall was later remodelled in the 1750s by the eminent architects Robert Adam and John Carr of York. Goldsborough Hall came to fame in the 1920s as the former residence of HRH Princess Mary (the Queen's aunt), who lived here after her marriage to Viscount Lascelles (later the 6th earl of Harewood).

Goldsborough Hall stands in 12 acres of beautifully landscaped grounds boasting unspoilt elevated views over the historic gardens and tranquil parkland, making it one of the most private, exclusive and beautiful places to visit in Yorkshire.

When we bought the hall, we realised that houses like this were built for entertaining. If we were to secure its long term future, we knew we had to give the Hall a reason to exist and wanted to create a unique way in which people could come and enjoy this historic house and setting whilst still maintaining it as our family home.

Since 2006, we have been hosting weddings and functions as well as creating very luxurious accommodation in 5* suites and rooms. You can visit the hall for a stately stay by booking a room for the night or a table to dine for lunch, afternoon tea or a 2 AA rosette dinner. We hope that this will help to write the next chapter in the Hall’s history, keeping the building intact and give something to pass on to the next generation.

So, whatever the reason for your visit, we hope that you will enjoy your time at Goldsborough Hall.

Mark and Clare Oglesby

Goldsborough is a quiet, picturesque village near the town of Knaresborough and Harrogate in North Yorkshire.

The Goldsborough Hoard

Evidence of early settlement in the village comes from a Viking hoard which was discovered in 1859 during construction outside the north wall of Goldsborough Church. Coins and artefacts dating from 700 to 1050 were found in a leaden chest including fragments of Viking brooches and arm-rings, together with 39 coins. It forms one of the largest collections ever discovered in the UK and is now held at the British Museum in London.

Domesday Survey

In the Domesday Survey of 1086 Goldsborough is referred to as "Godenesburg" and to this day there is some fine Norman architecture in St Mary's Church in the village.
Richard de Goldsburgh took the name of the village and his family held the manor for over four hundred years. Effigies in the church include one of a Richard de Goldsburgh who accompanied Edward I against William Wallace in 1298.

Construction of the Hall

In the 16th century there was a family feud and the thatched manor house situated at the far end of the village was burnt down. In 1599 Sir Richard Hutton, a London lawyer, originally from Cumbria, bought out all the claimants to the land and built Goldsborough Hall on its current site. The village remained tenanted to each subsequent owner of the Hall for the next 350 years.

Owned by the Lascelles Family

Daniel Lascelles, whose family eventually became the Earls of Harewood, bought Goldsborough Hall and the estate in the 1750s and the entrance gates to the village date back to this time. The Lascelles family used the Hall as the heirs in waiting’s family home or as a Dower House.

Home to a Princess

The village became famous in the 1920s when HRH Princess Mary, the Queen's aunt, came to live at Goldsborough Hall following her marriage to Viscount Lascelles.

In 1923, hundreds of visitors turned out when the Princess’s son George was christened in the village church with King George V and Queen Mary in attendance. The following year in 1924, her other son Gerald was also christened in the church.

In the 1950s, following the death of Princess Mary's husband, the 6th Earl of Harewood, the village was put up for sale. In 1952, villages were able to purchase their own homes for the first time in 1,000 years.

St. Mary's Church, Goldsborough

This delightful church, which stands adjacent to the Hall's grounds, is 13th-century Norman in origin with 14th-century additions and contains fine effigies of eminent local families who owned the Hall over the years.

There are floor slabs and stained glass windows commemorating the Byerley family in the 1750s and the marble tomb of Daniel Lascelles from 1784.

In the churchyard there is a standing stone dating back to 500AD where trading took place and taxes were paid. This later became the site of a 9th-century Saxon cross that makes up one of the pillars in the church.

In the 1850s one of the largest collections of UK artifacts was discovered in the churchyard, dating back to 750AD, this collection is now housed in the British Museum as the Goldsborough Hoard.

When HRH Princess Mary lived at Goldsborough Hall in the 1920s she did a great deal for the church including the donation a magnificent set of altar frontals.

The church is open to visitors during the summer and during the National Garden Scheme openings in March and July.

Goldsborough Village today

Goldsborough remains a quiet and peaceful village, set in the heart of the Yorkshire countryside. The village has a country pub, dating back to 1600, called The Bay Horse.

1250-1588 The Goldsborough Family

By the middle of the 13th century the Goldsborough family lived in a thatched moated Manor House at the opposite end of the village which was destroyed by fire after a family feud in 1588.

1599 Sir Richard Hutton

Sir Richard Hutton, knighted in 1617, was a prominent London lawyer, whose sons became the MP for Knaresborough and High Sheriff of Yorkshire. He purchased the village and all claimants to its land in 1599 and started construction of the present Goldsborough Hall on raised land close to the church in 1601. The portrait of Sir Richard Hutton is reproduced by kind permission of the Treasurer and Masters of the Bench of Gray's Inn, where the original hangs.

1625 Completion of Goldsborough Hall

Goldsborough Hall was finished in 1625. The hall was built on three storeys in red brick with limestone coigns and dressing. Its great oak staircase was lit by two stone mullioned windows. The Library with its fabulous 17th-century oak-panelling has retained its original magnificent painted plasterwork ceiling. The massive stone fireplace in The Dining Room has two over-mantel panels in bas-relief depicting scenes from the Old Testament and predates the hall, from the late 16th century.

1639 Sir Richard Hutton died

With the death of Sir Richard Hutton, the Hall and estate passed to his son, confusingly also called Sir Richard Hutton (knighted by King Charles I in 1625). He was MP for Knaresborough during the 1620s and also High Sheriff of Yorkshire.

Sir Richard Hutton, the younger, was Governor of Knaresborough Castle when the English Civil War broke out and fought on the King's side as a colonel in the Army. He defended the castle for four years and fought alongside the Kings men at the Battle of Marston Moor, near York between the villages of Tockwith and Long Marston in 1644.

1644 Occupation by Cromwell's army

While Sir Richard was away fighting, Oliver Cromwell's army occupied Goldsborough Hall under Cromwell's cousin Lt Col Edward Whalley, while they destroyed Knaresborough Castle. You can still see the hooks where the soldiers would have hung their hammocks in the Hall's attic. Sir Richard Hutton, the younger was killed in 1645 at the battle of Sherburn-in-Elmet. It is unclear who took over the Hall and the estate at this point though there is evidence of a son, also called Richard, who was involved in a Royalist plot in the 1650s and was imprisoned in Hull. It is known, however, that the estate passed by marriage to the Wharton family and from there onto the Byerley family.

1685 Captain Byerley and the Byerley Turk

In 1685 the Hall passed through the female side of the family into the Byerley family when the granddaughter of Richard Hutton, Mary Wharton, married her first cousin Robert Byerley. Colonel Robert Byerley acquired a very rare Turkish horse through this union. The stallion became Byerley's war horse and later, in 1690, saved his life at the Battle of the Boyne in Ireland. The Byerley Turk retired to a life of stud at Goldsborough Hall where he covered many mares. This horse is vital to thoroughbred horse history as it is the first of three stallions that make up all thoroughbreds in the world today. This famous horse died in 1706 and is said to have been buried in the grounds beneath a tree. The old pseudo-acacia near the hall and the old stable block could well have marked the spot.

1753 The Lascelles Family

None of Robert and Mary Byerley's children had any heirs and in 1753 the Hall was bought by Daniel Lascelles (whose family later became the Earls of Harewood). With this purchase, Goldsborough Hall moved into a new phase of its life and was extensively remodelled by John Carr of York and Robert Adam during their work on the construction of Harewood House for his brother. The main alteration was the addition of the bays extending upwards towards the roof, with windows on every floor and balustrades at the top. They created a new main entrance to the house facing east. Carr and Adam's features can be seen throughout and include the decorative cornice and marble fireplace in Princess Mary's Drawing Room and decorative columns and cornice in the dining room. The Lascelles' crest of a chained bear's head appears in a stone panel over the front entrance and also on the lead rain-water pipes around the building.
In 1784 Daniel Lascelles died without an heir and the Hall and all of its land passed to his brother, to form part of the then 24,000-acre Harewood estate. For the next 170 years the Hall remained within the Lascelles family, being used as a Dower House, the heirs-in-waiting house, a hunting lodge, or even rented out when not needed.

1922 Home to the Princess Royal

In 1922 HRH Princess Mary, the Queen's aunt married Viscount Henry Lascelles (later the 6th Earl of Harewood) and made Goldsborough Hall their first family home and country residence. The couple lived at Goldsborough before their move to Harewood House in the 1930s following the death of the 5th Earl.
Princess Mary made a number of changes to the house and details can still be seen in the stone fireplace in the dining room and stained glass windows on the staircase depicting the union of the Lascelles and the Royal Family. On the second floor there are also some stained glass windows, which were given by the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem on the occasion of the Princess' wedding. In the garden a vista was created to the south with the planting of the walled terrace, the beech avenue centred around Princess Mary's sundial and looking on to the Lime Tree Walk, which was planted by visiting members of the Royal family and surrounded by 50,000 daffodils in the spring. To the south east of the formal garden is a copse of Japanese cherry trees which were a wedding gift from the Emperor of Japan. For more information on the Royals at Goldsborough Hall, click here.

1939 Oatlands School

During the Second World War, Oatlands School, (now the site of St Aidan's School), Harrogate was stationed at the Hall. After the war the school remained at the Hall, purchasing it from the Harewood estate in 1951 following the death of the 6th Earl of Harewood. However, when the school’s owners, the Boyer family retired in 1961, the school closed.

1951 The sale of Goldsborough Hall

Princess Mary's husband, the 6th Earl of Harewood, died in 1947, leaving massive death duties. This coupled with the death of his father 17 years earlier and the end of the Second World War, forced the Lascelles family to sell the Goldsborough Estate a few years later, thus ending over 200 years of family ownership. The Goldsborough Estate is sold at auction in 1952, ending over 1,000 years of the estate village. The Hall was privately sold to the Boyers, who ran Oatlands School, the year before.

1961 The Hanson and Smith Families

In 1961 the Hanson family purchased the Hall from the school which had closed down, modernising the building and returning it to a private residence. In 1977, due to ill health, they sold the Hall to developers West Sons, Leeds. The Hall was briefly converted to a country house hotel that never opened by Elsie Sharp-Day, before being purchased by Russell Stansfield Smith in 1979.

The Smith family lived in the Hall for a few years as a family home before converting it into a nursing home. The home opened in 1983 and become the flagship for the Goldsborough Estates group of nursing homes throughout the UK. The group was sold to BUPA in 1997. In 2003 BUPA closed the nursing home as the Grade II* listed status of the Hall meant it could no longer be kept to modern nursing standards and placed the Hall up for sale.

As buyers were sought for the Hall, it was left derelict for over two years. Without heating or maintenance, nature took over. The Virginia creeper was almost covering the Hall entirely and coming inside in many places. Squirrels and rats occupied the attic and cellars and the inside of the Hall was also suffering after 20 years as a nursing home. Blocked downpipes were creating leaks causing extensive damage in some areas.

2005 The Oglesby Family and Restoration of The Hall

After 18 months of negotiations the Hall was saved from developers and purchased by local couple Mark and Clare Oglesby, and so began the huge task of restoration -clearing the creeper to allow the re-pointing with lime mortar of 15 miles of brickwork, which is an on-going project, the restoration of a heavily water damaged 1750s Robert Adam ceiling in Princess Mary's bedroom undertaken by Ryedale Plasterers, and the creation of luxury bedroom suites and rooms.

Mark, (the youngest son of the famous salmon angler Arthur Oglesby), and Clare, have returned the Hall once more to a privately owned family residence, where they live with their children Lucy and Charlotte.

With a vision to secure the Hall's future they hoped to find a better use for the building, allowing it to remain a private residence, with its history preserved for the future, so to this end the 12 Bedrooms are now luxury B&B Guest Accommodation, and Goldsborough Hall is one of Yorkshire's most prestigious and exclusive Wedding Venues.

Over the last 400 years Goldsborough Hall has attracted a lot of attention. In piecing together this history we have relied on help from local people. If you have any memories, documents or photographs of the building old or new, we would love to hear from you, so that we can preserve as much of the history of the building as possible

Princess Mary's First Family Home

Goldsborough Hall was home to HRH Princess Mary, the present Queen's aunt, in the 1920s after she married Viscount Lascelles, son and heir of the 5th Earl of Harewood. The hall had been in the Lascelles family since the 1750s and had been the childhood home of the Viscount.

Royal Wedding at Westminster Abbey

Princess Mary married Henry, Viscount Lascelles on 28th February 1922 at Westminster Abbey in London. One of her bridesmaids was Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon and this was the first time that the Queen Mother (as she became known later) had been on the Royal stage prior to her marriage to Mary's brother Bertie (George VI).

Lime Tree Walk Started

While renovations were being completed in the hall, Princess Mary and Viscount Lascelles honeymooned for the rest of the year. They moved into Goldsborough Hall and planted the first tree in the Lime Tree Walk on 28th December 1922.

George Christened at Goldsborough Church

Princess Mary's son, George, the 7th Earl of Harewood, was born in London on 7th February 1923 and was christened at St Mary's Church, Goldsborough (adjacent to the Hall) on 25th March 1923.

Attending the christening was King George V, Queen Mary with the Archbishop of York presiding and the christening photographs are taken on the front steps of Goldsborough Hall.

Princess Mary's second son Gerald was also christened at St Mary's Church the following year, but in a far quieter ceremony – and without the King and Queen attending.

Changes to the Hall and Gardens

Princess Mary made many changes to the Hall, both inside and out, using the Leeds architect Sydney Kitson.

It was her vision to create a vista to the south with beech hedges framing herbaceous borders leading down to the quarter of a mile long Lime Tree Walk. Here all the great and the good from the 1920s planted trees including three Kings and two Queens.

Royals who visited her at Goldsborough included her father George V, her mother Queen Mary, her brother then the Prince of Wales (later Edward VIII) and her brother then the Duke of York (later George VI).

The Move to Harewood

In 1929, Viscount Lascelles became the 6th Earl, following the death of his father. Princess Mary and the now Earl moved to Harewood House the following year.

In the Lime Tree Walk, the last few trees were planted, including one by George, the 7th earl of Harewood, on 14th April 1930, under his new name of Viscount Lascelles.