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Harewood House, Yorkshire, England

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Harewood House, Yorkshire, England

Image Geograph © Copyright R J McNaughton and licensed for reuse under Creative Commons Licence.

Harewood House is a country house in Harewood near Leeds, West Yorkshire, England. Designed by architects John Carr and Robert Adam, built between 1759 and 1771 for wealthy plantation owner Edwin Lascelles, 1st Baron Harewood.

Still home to the Lascelles family, Harewood House is a member of Treasure Houses of England, a marketing consortium for ten of the foremost historic homes in the country. The house is a Grade I listed building and a number of features in the grounds and courtyard have been listed as Grade I, II and II*.


The Lascelles family claim to have arrived in England with William the Conqueror, during the Norman Conquest of England. The family had settled in Yorkshire by 1315 as the "de Lascelles". Prosperous members of the county gentry, the Lascelles served as members of parliament and held prominent military positions. In the late seventeenth century the family purchased plantations in the West Indies, and the income generated was allowed Henry Lascelles to purchase the estate in 1738; his son, Edwin Lascelles, 1st Baron Harewood, built the house between 1759 and 1771.

Edwin initially employed the services of John Carr, an architect practising in the north of England and previously employed by a number of prominent Yorkshire families to design their new country houses. The foundations were laid in 1759, with the house being largely complete by 1765. The fashionable Robert Adam submitted designs for the interiors, which were approved in 1765. Adam made a number of minor alterations to Carr's designs for the exterior of the building, including internal courtyards. The house remained largely untouched until the 1840s when Sir Charles Barry was employed by the Henry Lascelles, 3rd Earl of Harewood, the father of thirteen children, to increase the accommodation. Barry added second stories to each of the flanking wings to provide extra bedrooms, removed the south portico and created formal parterres and terraces.

Recent history===

In 1922, Henry Lascelles, Viscount Lascelles married Mary, Princess Royal, the eldest daughter of George V. Initially living in the nearby Goldsborough Hall, the couple moved into Harewood House at the death of Henry's father in 1929. The house is the family seat of the Lascelles family, and home of David Lascelles, the eighth Earl.

The house and grounds have been transferred into a trust ownership structure managed by Harewood House Trust and are open to the public for most of the year. Harewood won a Large Visitor Attraction of the Year award in the 2009 national Excellence in England awards.

Harewood houses a collection of paintings by masters of the Italian Renaissance, family portraits by Reynolds, Hoppner and Lawrence, and modern art collected by the 7th Earl and Countess. Changing temporary exhibitions are held each season in the Terrace Gallery. Catering facilities in the house include Michelin-starred fine dining.

As well as tours of the house and grounds, Harewood has more than 100 acres of gardens, including a Himalayan garden and its stupa, an educational bird garden, an adventure playground and the historic All Saints Church with its alabaster tombs. From May 2007 to October 2008 the grounds contained Yorkshire's first planetarium, the Yorkshire Planetarium.[citation needed]

The Leeds Country Way passes through the Harewood Estate, to the south of the house and lake, as does the route of The White Rose Way.

Artist Joseph Turner visited the house and painted the outdoor landscape in watercolour. Elton John has performed a concert on the grounds. It has featured in both the television and film versions of Brideshead Revisited. Since 1996, part of the estate has been developed as the village in the ITV soap opera Emmerdale, which had been based in two different Yorkshire villages since its inception 24 years earlier.

Notable rooms

State Rooms

  • Ante Room
  • China Room
  • Cinnamon Drawing Room
  • Dining Room
  • East Bedroom
  • Gallery
  • HRH Princess Mary Display Room
  • Princess Mary's Dressing Room
  • The Library
  • Lord Harewood's Sitting Room
  • Music Room
  • Old Library
  • Spanish Library
  • State Bedroom
  • Watercolour Rooms
  • Yellow Drawing Room

Below Stairs

  • Old Kitchen
  • Pastry Room
  • Servants Database
  • Servants' Hall
  • Steward's Room
  • Still Room
  • Terrace Gallery
  • Vegetable Scullery

Harewood Bird Garden

The Bird Garden at has a collection of exotic species of birds, of which more than 30 are listed as vulnerable or endangered by the IUCN. It is a member of the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA) and the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria (EAZA).

Birds that can be seen in the garden include Humboldt penguins, Chilean flamingos, Duyvenbode's lories, macaws, rainbow lorikeets and snow geese.

Source Information from Wikipedia]