Home is where the art is

Housing hasn’t been far from the headlines in recent times, with an ever-growing need for modern, affordable housing for all. At the charming Derbyshire village of Glapwell, Meadowview Homes are making history, creating a modern community that celebrates the legacy of the former colliery town.

It not always the case that when land is developed that the developer pays homage to the history of that land but at Glapwell Meadowview Homes are doing just that and have put heritage at the heart of their development. Working with Derbyshire based planning consultants Planning & Design Practice Ltd, Meadowview Homes have gained planning permission and started to build 64 homes on the site of the former Glapwell Estate and hall. They share the land with Glapwell Nurseries / tea rooms and also the amazing Grade II Listed Gardener’s Bothy which is one of the last remaining elements of the Glapwell Estate. They are designing unique homes and integrating bespoke art and landscaping which will connect the old and new community of Glapwell to the past.

Glapwell is a small Derbyshire village, built atop a steep hill adjoining the village of Bramley Vale, situated three miles to the north of Bolsover. The Glapwell estate history dates back to before the twelfth century, mentioned in the Domesday book as having the Lord Serlo as Tenant in chief in 1086. Serlo’s great grandson Hugh, came into the manor of Glapwell c. 1180, and took his surname from the place. It was Hugh who probably built the first house on the site, and domestic chapel. The family continued there for two centuries, before in 1481 the heiress married into the family of Woolhouse, from whom it eventually passed to Samuel Hallowes of Dethick, by marriage with Elizabeth, daughter and sole heiress of Thomas Woolhouse of Glapwell.

Samuel’s eldest son, Thomas married well, his bride being Lady Catherine Brabazon, daughter of Chambré, 5th Earl of Meath, by a daughter of Viscount Chaworth. It was probably Thomas Woolhouse who built the earliest range, which was taxed in 1670 on nine hearths indicating that it was a house of relatively modest dimensions. His prosperity was, however, being increased by the discovery of coal on the estate and thus a number of extensions were built over time. In 1861, Capt. Francis Hallowes, RN, inherited the estate from a cousin and, it was he who added the canted bay, the new entrance hall, and the conservatory. The estate then ran to 2,852 acres, including Glapwell colliery, then going full blast.

Further alterations were probably made by Rev Brabazon Hallowes 1819-1892. His son Thomas Richard Francis Brabazon on inheriting in 1892, decided to retire and let the house to one of the Barnes’s of Ashgate (now Lords Gorell). The hall was let to various tenants and the hall became derelict in the early 1900’s and lay derelict for some time before being demolished in 1951 by the National Coal Board. The estate was ultimately broken up by Sir Christopher Mather-Jackson 5th Bt. and sold. Only the fine gate piers, which formed the entrance to the hall and the eighteenth-century Gardener’s Bothy, formerly a pavilion and feature in the garden of the demolished Glapwell Hall survive.

The Hill family of Glapwell Nurseries are working closely with Meadowview Homes to breathe life into the site. Once the development is completed, parts of the site will, for the first time, be classed as public open space. For years the site has had no actual use or purpose and the fencing surrounding it was unsightly and dilapidated. Glapwell nurseries has been owned by the Hill family for more than thirty years with the nursery offering everything from plants, seeds, and bulbs, to garden furniture, barbecues, and gardening tools. It now boasts a brand-new tearoom named the Bothy Bistro and Coffee Shop. Meadowview Homes are restoring the Gardener’s Bothy to conserve it and ensure its long-term future. They are also reintroducing a formal garden setting as part of the development which will contain public art, unique garden features, and a children’s play area for residents to enjoy and to link up the site to surrounding parts of the village.

The public art element will be in three separate areas across the site but all will have a distinct design theme running through them to bring cohesion to the pieces. This will contain a large 3.6m diameter dry stone sculpture. The stone will be laid radiating to the central hole. The inner and outer edges will be contained within a corten steel ring. The faces of the circle will be dished drawing the eye into the centre. In the Bothy Area there will be a sculpture on the lawns on each side of the road with the same design style as above but at a smaller scale. The faces will be flat not dished and again they will be contained within corten steel bands. The sculptures will sit on circles of pitched stone replicating the face of the feature on the horizontal surface.

A great deal of thought by Meadowview Homes has gone into how the public art will contribute and be used by the public in the context of the wider local area. They realised that the project called for artists who have suitable experience with hard landscaping on a large scale who could deliver a safe and worthy contribution to the local community. Meadowview Homes came across an award-winning dry stone waller Andrew Loudon who uses local materials and themes that reflect the community. He is working in collaboration with CB Arts Chris Brammall one of the leading metalworkers in the UK and responsible for the sculpture on the Chesterfield roundabout. The design drawings and landscaping theme have been provided by Janine Crimmins who has won 4 RHS medals. Meadowview Homes are confident that the artwork by these established artists will be an asset to the local community.

Abigail Lee from Meadowview Homes says, “I’m delighted to be able to introduce our new Glapwell Gardens housing development for occupation this summer. This exciting new development features our signature stylish housing along with peaceful open spaces for playing, exercising and socialising. We’re thrilled at having talented artists Andrew Loudon and Janine Crimmins onboard to help make our open spaces really special with sustainable landscaping and stunning sculptures”.

Glapwell gardens is the perfect setting for homebuyers wishing to settle in a quiet countryside location within easy reach of The Peak District, Chatsworth, Haddon Hall and Matlock just a few miles away. Glapwell Gardens is exceptionally well placed for commuters requiring access to major road networks, including the M1 (2 minutes away) and the A38 that provides access to Nottingham and Derby to the South and Chesterfield along with Sheffield to the North.

Rich in industrial and cultural history it’s only fitting that Glapwell Gardens will add to that history with its own unique public artwork. If you would like to find out more about this interesting and unique new development then visit us at www.meadowviewhomes.co.uk or call 01332 460145.