Holmside Hall

Has been described as a Certain Fortified Manor House

There are major building remains

NameHolmside Hall
Alternative NamesHolmside Old Hall; Lanchester
Historic CountryDurham
Modern AuthorityDurham
1974 AuthorityCounty Durham
Civil ParishBurnhope

Holmside Hall, the ancient seat of the Tempests and Whittinghams is of pre-C15 date. Many traces survive of the old house, the moat being almost entire. The west courtyard wall is original and a line of ancient buildings ran along the north of the courtyard. It is believed that the west end of this range was the chapel. "The house appears to be C19 or C20 in date but in the out-buildings are windows and doors of Medieval date"

The Hall seems to have belonged to a class of mansions inferior to the peel or castle, yet built with some view to defence. Part of the old court-yard is remaining; the Chapel forms the North side, and its West window is still perfect, of two lights under a square label, with the cinquefoil and two blank shields in the spandrils. Above this West window a mutilated figure is fixed in the wall, with a full moony face, and a kind of round helmet or pot en tete. I should almost conjecture this to be a rude piece of Roman sculpture, removed from the Station which may probably have furnished the coins and squared stones used in building this chantry of the Umfrevilles. The original lights of the Hall are narrow, strongly guarded with mullions and iron bars, but the gables have been taken down, and the house enlarged towards the South, and it now presents a confused mass of buildings of very different dates, with outshots and additions on all sides, including in its interior a number of small ill-connected apartments. The moat includes a ruined garden and orchard, and a stone throw to the West stands another small old building defended by its separate moat. The situation is in a hollow flat, and a few centuries ago the gloomy hall of the Tempests must have been nearly immersed in wood and morass. (Surtees)

Not scheduled

This is a Grade 2 listed building protected by law

Historic England Scheduled Monument Number
Historic England Listed Building number(s)
Images Of England
Historic England (PastScape) Defra or Monument number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceNZ205496
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Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights Reserved

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  • Salter, Mike, 2002, The Castles and Tower Houses of County Durham (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 34
  • Emery, Anthony, 1996, Greater Medieval Houses of England and Wales Vol. 1 Northern England (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press) p. 103
  • Corfe, Tom (ed), 1992, 'The Visible Middle Ages' in An Historical Atlas of County Durham p. 28-9
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 1 p. 139
  • Hugill, Robert, 1979, The Castles and Towers of the County of Durham (Newcastle; Frank Graham) p. 57
  • Pevsner, N., 1953, Buildings of England: Durham (Harmondsworth) (London) p. 168
  • Gould, Chalkley, 1905, 'Ancient Earthworks' in Page, Wm (ed), VCH Durham Vol. 1 (London) p. 356 online copy
  • Boyle, J.R., 1892, Comprehensive Guide to the County of Durham: its Castles, Churches, and Manor-Houses (London) p. 450
  • Surtees, R., 1816 (1972 Reprint), The History and Antiquities of the County Palatine of Durham Vol. 2 p. 324 online transcription


  • Ryder, P.F., 1987, 'Holmside Hall' Durham Archaeological Journal Vol. 3 p. 89-94
  • Hadcock, R.N., 1939, 'A map of mediaeval Northumberland and Durham' Archaeologia Aeliana (ser4) Vol. 16 p. 148-218 esp 200