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Inventory Garden & Designed Landscape

DALZELL HOUSEGDL00132

Status: Designated

Documents

Where documents include maps, the use of this data is subject to terms and conditions.

Summary

Information

  • Category: N/A
  • Date Added: 01/07/1987

Location

  • Local Authority: North Lanarkshire
  • Parish: Cambusnethan, Dalziel

National Grid Reference

  • NGR: NS 75976 54928
  • Coordinates: 275976, 654928

Summary

Probably dating from the 17th century, although possibly earlier, the parkland and woodland make a stunning contribution to the surrounding scenery and provide a valuable wildlife refuge.

Importance of Site

A site included in the Inventory is assessed for its condition and integrity and for its level of importance. The criteria used are set out in Annex 5 of the Scottish Historic Environment Policy (December 2011). The principles are represented by the following value-based criteria and we have assigned a value for each on a scale ranging from outstanding value to no value. Criteria not applicable to a particular site have been omitted. All sites included in the Inventory are considered to be of national importance.

Work of Art

Value:
High

The gardens at Dalzell have been described in several historical references as being of value as a Work of Art in the past.

Historical

Value:
Outstanding

There are physical remains of an early landscape and the structure of the planting still corresponds to that shown on General Roy's map of 1750.

Horticultural, Arboricultural, Silvicultural

Value:
Some

The arboretum at Dalzell gives it some Horticultural value.

Architectural

Value:
Outstanding

It provides the setting for a category A listed house and the policies contain other Architectural features of interest.

Scenic

Value:
Outstanding

Dalzell House and grounds make a significant contribution to the surrounding scenery.

Nature Conservation

Value:
Outstanding

The RSPB Reserve along the River Clyde, and the large area of woodland habitat give this site great value for Nature Conservation.

Location and Setting

Dalzell House lies some 1.5 miles (2.5km) to the south-east of Motherwell town centre. It lies on the north side of the River Clyde's broad valley and the river forms its southern boundary. The Dalzell Burn has cut a narrow gorge in the Carboniferous sandstone on its way to the Clyde; Dalzell House was built as a stronghold on the north bank above the gorge with steep slopes to the south and east of the keep and a moat to its west. The soils are mainly brownearths and they support a wide range of plants. The house's situation affords fine views of the surrounding landscape and particularly southwards across the Clyde Valley. The designed landscape is visible mainly from across the Clyde to the south but the north parks and policy woodlands are also visible from the neighbouring area.

The house is set in the centre of the park on a hill some 263' (80m) high. The land slopes gently southwards to the Clyde. The designed landscape extends from the Clyde in the south and follows the policy woodlands to the west and east to the minor road and lodges in the north. Baron's Haugh was once part of the estate and the beech avenue extended westwards along the Clyde to the Roman Camp at the western end of the walk where the summerhouse known as Gladstone's used to stand. These western fields were not marked as parkland on the 1st edition OS map although were probably used as pastureland and did contain some individual trees. By 1900 and the 2nd edition map, the Dalzell and Broomside Collieries and their associated railway lines had extended into this western part of the estate. The inner policies have retained the same boundary since the 1850s. The main lime avenues to the south of the house can be identified on both maps and the remnants can be identified today. There are 232 acres (94ha) within the designed landscape today.

Site History

The Dalzell family held the barony up to c.1342 when it is reputed that it was sequestered from Sir Robert Dalzell for residing in England without the King's consent. James Hamilton, 1st of Dalzell, amassed a large fortune by supplying the army during the wars of Cromwell. In 1647 he had a grant of the old Barony of Dalzell, resigned by the Earl of Carnwath; he was a nephew of the Earl through his mother Christiana, a daughter of Robert Dalzell of Dalzell. Dalzell then stayed in the Hamilton family until 1952. Archibald Hamilton the 4th Laird (1694-1774) succeeded in 1727; he was a keen horticulturist and planted some rare trees. Roy's map of 1750 shows trees planted in formal grids of N/S, E/W orientation, with two main diagonals to the south-east. The main south avenue is shown on the Roy map. Archibald Hamilton was succeeded in his work by his son James, who planted a rose garden midway between the house and kitchen garden, sheltered by coniferous and deciduous trees. The main entrance was the Park Avenue until the laird put in a new north avenue and two lodges. The 5th Laird was succeeded by his brother John whose son, Archibald, was associated with Robert Owen, the New Lanark socialist, and whose experiments with their other estate at Orbiston proved too costly and it had to be sold.

In 1832, William Cobbett visited Dalzell and recorded that it would be where he 'would choose to reside'. General Hamilton died in 1834 and was succeeded by his grandson, John. The architect R.W. Billings was commissioned to carry out major alterations to the house in 1857 and he stayed to supervise the work. The gardens were also improved at this time by a local man, Andrew Cassels. In 1886 John Hamilton was created Lord Hamilton; in 1888 a royal visit by the Prince and Princess of Wales involved new furnishings. Lord Hamilton died in 1900 and was succeeded by his son Gavin. He died in 1952 and the family moved to Surrey. The house was sold, part of it being used as a boys' school until 1967 when it was purchased by Motherwell & Wishaw Town Council. The house has remained empty since then, although some restoration work was undertaken. It was transferred to Motherwell District Council in 1975 and is currently available for sale. Dalzell House was sold in 1985 for conversion into flats. The park is run as a Country Park by Motherwell District Council.

Landscape Components

Architectural Features

Dalzell House is based on an ancient keep dating back to the mid-15th century. At that time, it was surrounded by a moat and defended by a portcullis across the entrance to the keep. It was extended in the 17th century when a new three-storey turretted and dormered wing was added at the south-west. The tower house was restored by Maitland Wardrop in 1853. In 1857 the architect and antiquarian R.W. Billings remodelled and further extended the house adding a north wing and stable block. It is the only category A listed building in Motherwell District. The Terraced Garden contained several architectural features: the three terraces on the steep south face of the Burn are enclosed by ornamental walls, and on the second terrace two sundials and a fountain used to stand. The 60' deep St. Margaret's well lies in the West Courtyard; the Coach- house and Stables in the North Courtyard are in the process of conversion to housing.

The summerhouse was built c.1736 on the site of the Roman Camp at the western end of the Park; it was known as 'Gladstone's Summerhouse' after Gladstone visited in 1879. It was moved to its present site north of the house for safety but its roof was destroyed by arson in 1985. The Gazebo, built by Lord Gavin, is a mid-19th century summerhouse above The Dell and mausoleum and is listed B.

The Mausoleum was built in c.1800 on the site and plan of the former St. Patrick's Church which had been used as a parish church until 1789. The Mausoleum is listed B and the graveyard is listed B. There are also some interesting bridges across the Dalzell Burn and its tributaries.

Parkland

The former deer parks are still in pasture; the north park has lost some of its trees on the west side but retains some parkland trees on the east side. The cricket ground is within the eastern half and a field is let for horse- grazing in the west half. The southern parks are still in pasture and the striking lines of the avenue define a vista from the house southwards across the river. The river is lined with an avenue to the west known as the 'Beech Walk' and reputed to be one of the first of its kind. The main drive to the house is lined with an avenue. The marshland adjacent to the river to the south-west of the parks is now managed by the RSPB as a wildlife reserve.

Woodland

There is substantial woodland cover in the policies, composed of a wide range of species both exotic and indigenous. Sycamore is predominating in the mixed deciduous areas with yew and Rhododendron forming thick layers of understorey in many parts of the grounds. The northern fringe woodlands are suffering from litter dumping and vandalism. There are some older oaks and beech around 200 years old. Sycamore, rowan and poplar have naturally regenerated and some areas could be thinned to allow greater light penetration and improve the ground flora. There is a very old oak in the north-west of the park.

The Gardens

The Japanese Garden was apparently moved from a site further to the west in the Park, to its present position on the banks of the Dalzell Burn. It was created by Lady Sybil Hamilton in the early 1900s. Very little of the original plant material now remains although bamboo and Japanese maples have survived. It once contained a pond, Azaleas and Rhododendrons, ornamental statues (oriental dragons and lions), and a flight of steps modelled on those of the Buddhist Temple in Nagasaki. Yew and Rhododendron have grown up through this garden to the waterfall which is still an attractive feature.

A path leads from the Terraced Garden into the arboretum to the west of the house. The trees have all been recorded and the arboretum includes some good specimen trees including Tulip trees, Cedars, a Deodar, Sequoias, and an avenue of Irish Yew. Adjacent to the drive at its east end is the Cadzow oak, a very old pedunculate oak, of which the narrowest part of the girth was measured as 24' in the early 1900s. Within the arboretum is the Rose Garden of small flowerbeds planted up with shrub roses, and to the north of the Drive is the Shrubbery recently planted up with flowering shrub species. There are some interesting Rhododendrons in the arboretum. The 'Faerie Circle' to the south-west corner of the arboretum is a circle of yew trees planted above the Burn. A summerhouse was marked on the 1st edition OS map of c.1850 in this area. From here there is a good view westwards of the stone arched bridge downstream.

Woodland walks extend from the house on both sides of the Burn. To the east, the paths go through to the Japanese Garden, and along the gorge to the west. South of the house (on the brow of the hill overlooking the view southwards), there are the remains of the old Bowling Green, now overgrown. Woodland paths lead up to the Faerie Circle and arboretum and westwards to the Mausoleum and The Dell. The woodland is of mixed deciduous species: horse chestnut, beech, oak, ash and sycamore, underplanted with Rhododenron.

The area to the north of the mausoleum was planted up as a garden by Lord Gavin Hamilton in memory of his wife, Lady Sybil. The octagonal gazebo was built at the top or north end of the garden and Lord Gavin used to sit there overlooking his wife's grave. A plaque in the gazebo was inscribed with the dedication 'In Memory of 33 Happy Years'. Stepping stones lead down through the garden to the mausoleum; the garden is now overgrown.

Arboretum

A path leads from the Terraced Garden into the arboretum to the west of the house. The trees have all been recorded and the arboretum includes some good specimen trees including Tulip trees, Cedars, a Deodar, Sequoias, and an avenue of Irish Yew. Adjacent to the drive at its east end is the Cadzow oak, a very old pedunculate oak, of which the narrowest part of the girth was measured as 24' in the early 1900s. Within the arboretum is the Rose Garden of small flowerbeds planted up with shrub roses, and to the north of the Drive is the Shrubbery recently planted up with flowering shrub species. There are some interesting Rhododendrons in the arboretum. The 'Faerie Circle' to the south-west corner of the arboretum is a circle of yew trees planted above the Burn. A summerhouse was marked on the 1st edition OS map of c.1850 in this area. From here there is a good view westwards of the stone arched bridge downstream.

References

Bibliography

Sources

Printed Sources

Robert Hurd & Partners, 'Dalzell House'

Herbert Maxwell, 1911

E.M.H. Cox, History of Gardening in Scotland,1935

T. Hannan, 1928

Sales Particulars, May 1985

New Statistical Account 1845

Motherwell District Libraries, 'Dalzell House, An Outline History', 1985

Motherwell District Libraries,'Historic Buildings in Motherwell District'

Groome's

Listings

NMRS, Photographs

About Designations

Inventory of Gardens and Designed Landscapes

Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for the designation of buildings, monuments, gardens and designed landscapes and historic battlefields. We also advise Scottish Ministers on the designation of historic marine protected areas.

The inventory is a list of Scotland’s most important gardens and designed landscapes. We maintain the inventory under the terms of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979.

We add sites of national importance to the inventory using the criteria published in the Historic Environment Scotland Policy Statement.

The information in the inventory record gives an indication of the national importance of the site(s). It is not a definitive account or a complete description of the site(s). The format of records has changed over time. Earlier records may be brief and some information will not have been recorded.

Enquiries about development proposals, such as those requiring planning permission, on or around inventory sites should be made to the planning authority. The planning authority is the main point of contact for all applications of this type.

Find out more about the inventory of gardens and designed landscapes and our other designations at www.historicenvironment.scot. You can contact us on 0131 668 8716 or at designations@hes.scot.

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Printed: 23/03/2017 06:14