Panaramic view

Jervaulx Park  | OS Grid Ref: 417184,485530  | Site classified as: Park:Deer  | HPG Ref: 60001

Map Evidence

1856/57 OS
Jervaulx Park depicted, bounded by Newstead Lane to S and W, the river Ure to the N, a field boundary to E. Within the park there is a fishpond to the southwest and individual trees line the main drive from the E leading to the abbey ruins. The abbey ruins are separated from the park by a boundary, possibly a ha-ha. In the SE corner a grotto is indicated. To the S lie a group of buildings with an orchard and several cottages near Newstead Lane. In the NW is Jervaulx Hall. To the North is the Back Wall plantation containing Abbey Mill. Further N on the bank of the river Ure lies Carrot Bank Nursery. To the W of Newstead Lane are depicted a nursery plantation and an orchard or garden.

1912 OS map
Jervaulx Park extended to include Wind Hills, a large fishpond is depicted with clumps of trees in the parkland. The drive is extended towards two new park entrances at East Lodge and South Lodge. A belt of trees to the N contains an ice house. The buildings in the S of the park have been extended and renamed Abbey Hill. The abbey ruins and their boundary within the park are indicated. The Back Wall Plantation has increased to the E, Carrot Bank Nursery still depicted. Near the Hall North Lodge leads to Newstead Lane. The pond in SW of park is no longer depicted.

2000 OS Explorer 302
Back Wall plantation considerably reduced. Other features unchanged. To the W of the road, the nursery area is reduced and shows several buildings.

Additional Information

Cunliffe-Lister, S. 1999 Days of Yore: a history of Masham and District. Wilton
Jecock, M. 1999 'Jervaulx Abbey, North Yorkshire'. English Heritage
Jennings, B. and T. Croucher 1999 The Yorkshire Monasteries: Cloister, Land and People. Dalesman Publishing Co. Ltd
Platt. C. 1969 The Monastic Grange in Medieval England. Fordham University Press
Smith, L. 2014 'Shock of the old: changing identities of monastic ruins in Georgian gardens'. Unpublished MA Dissertation, University of York

NYCRO – Jervaulx estate archive – ZJX

History of Ownership

The first significant owners of the site were the community of Jervaulx Abbey, who arrived in the mid 12th century. They built the abbey and associated buildings and remained there until the Dissolution of the Monasteries under Henry VIII. The last abbot, Adam Sedbar, was a prominent objector to the Dissolution and in 1537 he was executed for taking part in the Pilgrimage of Grace. The abbey and its estate of granges, vaccaries, etc became the property of the Crown.
Henry VIII granted the estate to the Earl of Lennox in 1544. The estate was inherited in due course by James I of England, who granted the manor and castle of Whorlton and lands formerly belonging to Jervaulx Abbey to Edward Bruce in 1603, seemingly as a personal favour as Edward had accompanied King James to England in 1601. In 1606 a further royal grant gave Edward Bruce lands at Dodderston Grange, also formerly part of the Jervaulx estates, and in the same year Edward purchased the manor of Newton-le-Willows from the Darcy family at Hornby Castle. The royal grants of 1603 and 1606 account for the bulk of the Bruce estate, but small acquisitions were made up to 1666. However the Bruce family acquired more lands in other parts of England through advantageous marriages.
Edward Bruce was created Lord Kinloss in 1601, and his descendants obtained the titles of Earl of Elgin in 1633, Baron Bruce of Whorlton in 1641, and Earl of Ailesbury in 1664.

In 1747 the male line of the Bruce family failed. The estate went to the nephew of the 3rd and last Earl of Ailesbury, Thomas Brudenell, the son of the 3rd Earl of Cardigan. He was permitted to take the surname Brudenell-Bruce, and he became the 1st Earl of Ailesbury under a new creation. His son Charles became the 1st Marquis of Ailesbury in 1821. This title continued with Charles' son George up to 1878, then passed to George's brother Ernest who died in 1886. It seems that there were few additions to the estate that Thomas Brudenell had inherited in 1747. Ernest's grandson George William Thomas then inherited, but may not have taken control of his estate. This George was a compulsive and unsuccessful gambler, who by 1886 had amassed enormous debts, and to pay his creditors it seems to have been necessary to sell off parts of the Ailesbury estates. The Jervaulx estate was sold by trustees for the 4th Marquis to Samuel Cunliffe-Lister (Lord Masham) of Swinton in 1889.

Lord Masham leased Jervaulx Hall to Hector Christie, who in 1907 purchased the whole of the Jervaulx estate after Lord Masham's death in 1906. Hector Christie died in 1915, and his son William Lorenzo Christie inherited. He died in 1962, and the estate was sold to Major and Mrs W V Burdon. On the death of the Major, his son Rae inherited, but the estate was managed by his brother Ian. Ian Burdon purchased the abbey and parkland in 2000.

The development of the park and gardens

Jervaulx is situated on an old river terrace, at an elevation of 100m with rising ground to the south and north. To the east lies an area of undulating land known as Wind Hills. The earliest evidence for the presence of gardens in the vicinity of the former Jervaulx Abbey comes from a Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England measured survey. This identified the presence of a gentry house to the east of the Abbey buildings and earthworks associated with formal gardens and features on the south and east sides. A map of 1627, drawn by W. Senior, shows an agricultural landscape of small fields, a walled enclosure containing an inner court and a double gabled building to the west on the site now occupied by Jervaulx Hall. This map gives no indication of the existence of the earlier mansion or gardens to the east of the Abbey. These are assumed to have been built by the Lennox family (late C16th-early C17th) and to have been demolished shortly afterwards as the family fortunes waned. The Abbey Mill is depicted, although it is suggested by Jecock (1999) that this had been altered after the Dissolution to serve as a romantic ruin.

In the early C19th the 3rd Earl of Ailesbury launched a programme of agricultural improvements to his Yorkshire estates, including Jervaulx. His keen interest in archaeology also led to a programme of excavation of the Abbey ruins and alterations to the grounds surrounding the Abbey in order to enhance its aesthetic and picturesque qualities. The Abbey ruins and grounds became a successful tourist attraction almost immediately. A plan produced by Robert Menzies, dated 1807, illustrates the proposed alterations to the earlier landscape. It depicts a 170 acre park which has the abbey as its central subject and a new drive from an entrance to the south through clumps of trees. A list of repairs (1808) includes repairs to the 'abbey fence' or ha-ha, still visible today and which can be observed to cut through some remains of the early gardens. Smith (2014) suggests that there are aspects of Jervaulx as a landscape park which present affinities with Repton's style (such as the short drive, the abbey ruins as the centerpiece of the park and the views forming natural eye catchers).

By 1886 when the Jervaulx Abbey Estate was sold with its 10,000 acres of land, the sale catalogue mentions the 'venerable ruins of Jervaulx Abbey', a 'moderate sized family residence' situated in a 'beautiful park of 180 acres of a highly picturesque character'. There were also 'tastefully laid out gardens and pleasure grounds surrounding the Hall, disposed in parterres, Dutch garden etc . . '. The 1897 OS map confirms the extension of the parkland up to the banks of the river Ure and incorporating the area of Wind Hills.

Today the parkland and abbey ruins remain essentially unaltered and accessible to the public.

Sites related to this one

There are remains of an Ice House within the larger Site.

Extract from 1851 OS map centred on Site
Extract from OS Landranger map map centred on Site
Extract from Google Map image map centred on Site
The Abbey ruins from the carriage drive
The ha-ha between Abbey ruins and parkland
View of parkland from Abbey towards Abbey Hill
Parkland viewed from Abbey
The drive from East Lodge
Ornamental clump of trees beside drive from East Lodge
The fishpond
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