The Full Wiki

Speke Hall: Wikis


Note: Many of our articles have direct quotes from sources you can cite, within the Wikipedia article! This article doesn't yet, but we're working on it! See more info or our list of citable articles.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Speke Hall
Architectural style Tudor
Structural system Timber
wattle and daub
Town Liverpool
Country England
Started 1530
Completed 1598
Speke Hall by James Abbott McNeill Whistler (1870).

Speke Hall is a wood-framed, Tudor house in Speke, Liverpool, England. It is one of the finest Tudor-era manor houses survivng. Previous owners were the Norrises,[1] the Beauclerks[2] and the Watts.[3]



Construction of the current building began in 1530,[4] though earlier buildings had been on the site, parts of which are incorporated into the current structure. The house belongs to the National Trust and is open to the public. The house was owned by the Norris family for many generations until the female heiress married into the Beauclerk family. The Watt family purchased the house and estate from the Beauclerks in 1795. The last surviving heir of the Watt family was Miss Adelaide Watt, who inhertited the house and returned to it in 1878 at the age of 21 years. She died in 1921, leaving the house and estate in trust for 21 years, during which time it was looked after by the staff under the supervision of Thomas Whatmore, who had been butler to Miss Watt[5]. At the end of this period, in 1942, the house passed into the ownership of the National Trust. The house was administered by Liverpool City Corporation from 1946 until 1986, when the National Trust took over full responsibility.

Since the end of the 15th century the building has been gradually renovated and extended. The wood-frame style is typical of the period with the oak frame resting on a base of red sandstone. The main beams of the house are stiffened with smaller timbers and filled with wattle and daub.

The Great Hall was the first part of the house to be built in 1530. The Great Parlour (or Oak Parlour) wing was added in 1531, around this time the North Bay was also added to the house. Between 1540 and 1570 the south wing was altered and extended, the west wing was added between 1546–47 with additional rooms. The last significant change to the building was in 1598, when the north range was added by Edward Norris. Since this time there have only been minor changes to the Hall and gardens.

The house features a thunderbox toilet, a priest hole and a special observation hole built into a chimney in a bedroom to allow the occupant to see the approach to the house to warn the priest that people were coming. There is also an eavesdrop (a small open hole under the eaves of the house) which allowed a servant to listen in on the conversations of people awaiting admission at the original front door.

In 1612 a porch was added to the Great Parlour. A laundry and dairy were founded in 1860; the laundry was altered in the 1950s.

The gardens date from the 1850s. In the main building there are two Yew trees called Adam and Eve which are estimated to be between 500 and 1000 years old.[6]


The Home Farm building has been renovated and now houses the shop, restaurant and reception. The laundry has been converted into the education room and the dairy now has new interpretation. Walks in the grounds give panoramic views over the Mersey Basin towards North Wales.

Speke Hall was featured in Series 13 of Most Haunted which was broadcast on LivingTV on 13th October 2009.

Speke Hall


  1. ^ Norris history
  2. ^ Beauclerks history
  3. ^ Watts history
  4. ^ History
  5. ^ [1]
  6. ^ Gardens

External links

Coordinates: 53°20′12″N 2°52′27″W / 53.3368°N 2.87422°W / 53.3368; -2.87422



Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address