Sir John Soane's Museum Drawings

Brampton Bryan came into the possession of the Harley family in 1309 through marriage with the Brampton family – the powerful March Earls – who had lived there since Domesday. The core of the estate remains in the ownership of the Harley family. The castle was built gradually between the early fourteenth and late sixteenth centuries, and was made famous by its siege during the Civil War when it was defended by the Parliamentarian Lady Brilliana Harley. The family now live a little to the west in a Georgian brick house.

 

Edward Harley, 4th Earl of Oxford and Mortimer (1726-90), was MP (Tory) for Herefordshire (1747-55); High Steward of Hereford (1755-90); Lord of the Bedchamber (1760-90); and Lord Lieutenant of Radnorshire (1766-90). In 1777 he commissioned Robert Adam’s designs for a stable and entrance gates in a castle style, and a large ruinous folly. None of these were executed.

 

Literature:

A. T. Bolton, The architecture of Robert and James Adam, 1922, Volume II, Index p. 4; N. Pevsner, The buildings of England: Herefordshire, 1963, p. 81; D. King, The complete works of Robert & James Adam and unbuilt Adam, 1991, Volume II, pp. 229, 232, 243; A. Tait, Robert Adam: the creative mind:  from the sketch to the finished drawing, 1996, p. 29; S. Astley, Robert Adam’s castles, 2000, p. 34

 

Frances Sands, 2011

Reference Number:

SM Adam volume 37/61

Purpose:

Design for a Gateway for the Earl of Oxford, 9 June 1777, unexecuted

Aspect:

(1) Plan and elevation of a castellated gateway between two one-storey turrets, flanked on either side by a wall, and to the left a large three-storey, five-bay, castellated lodge with a hipped roof and turret end bays. There is a pencil-drawn isometric projection of this lodge in the top right-hand corner of the sheet

Hand:

Office hand, possibly Joseph Bonomi, and title inscription in the hand of William Adam

(1)



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Reference Number:

SM Adam volume 37/60

Purpose:

Design for Stable Offices for the Earl of Oxford, 9 June 1777, unexecuted

Aspect:

(2) Plan and elevation of a castellated building with a two-storey, three-bay central block containing a coach house, with a pyramidal roof, a central segmental carriage arch, and turret end bays, and flanked by one-storey, four-bay stable ranges with hipped roofs, arched windows and tower end bays. In front the building is enclosed by a stable yard with an entrance to the side

Hand:

Office hand, possibly Joseph Bonomi, and title inscription in the hand of William Adam

(2)



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Reference Number:

SM Adam volume 37/59

Purpose:

Presentation drawing for a ruinous folly, 1777, unexecuted

Aspect:

(3) Panoramic perspective within a landscape of a ruinous castellated curtain wall, devoid of a keep, punctuated by towers and with semicircular carriage arches on each range. The structure appears to function as an enclosed court

Hand:

Robert Adam

(3)



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