The house was built between 1740-1744 for local land owner William Wrightson by George Platt a local mason/architect.
The house was altered and expanded by James Paine between 1749-1752 by the addition of the chapel and library. Some of the best craftsmen and artist of the day were invited in decorating and furnishing the house. The last owner died in 1952 and the house eventually opened as a museum in 1967.
In 2002 the park and house received a major funding award from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). This money helped reveal and restore stunning ceiling paintings in the Italianate Chapel after being hidden under layers of paint for 50 years. The Great Kitchen, Bake House, Still Room and Laundry have also been restored giving a glimpse of what life was like 'below stairs'.
It also allowed us to restore the gardens and improve the landscaping. After careful consideration the date of restoration was set to 1909 to reflect the house. The work in the park aimed to conserve and restore the historic features of the 18th century landscape, and yet make it more accessible for today’s visitors. This included restoring ‘ye greate river’, which involved major civil engineering on the reconstruction of the middle lake. The lakes are a rich habitat for many species including, watervoles, kingfishers and green flowered heleborine orchids.
The 18th century rock arch and cascade have been restored and a new water supply added to top up the lakes. Part of the bridge described in Richard Woods memoranda was unearthed by archaeologists and recorded, however it was not practicable to fully restore it. Listed boundary walls were restored with great care taken to match stone and mortar mix. New paths with drainage systems were laid to provide improved access for everyone. Benches were designed from an original shown on a photograph at Cusworth.
Cusworth Hall, museum and park re-opened to the public in May 2007
Times have changed and the new users of the park have different needs to the Wrightson family. Most visitors travel by car to visit Cusworth. A better and more open car park has been built with security cameras and barriers. Good lighting has been installed in the car park and throughout the park to connect with the house for evenings and dull winter afternoons.
- Weddings at Cusworth Hall
- Our collections
- Rooms for hire at Cusworth Hall
- The Friends of Cusworth Park
- What's on at Cusworth Hall
- Cusworth Hall museum and park
For further information, please contact us:
- email: museumC@doncaster.gov.uk
- tel: 01302 782342
- address: Cusworth Hall Museum & Park, Cusworth Lane, Doncaster, DN5 7TU