Medieval Great Hall, North Yorkshire

‘Forlorn’ was how the Great Hall was described in 1999, in an architect’s condition report. The idea was to restore the room, turn it into a library, and live in it. The Hall lies at the heart of this 14th century house. Since 1569 it had been stripped and empty and used as a farm store. The massive fireplace had been stripped and re-assembled in the undercroft below, which had become the kitchen. The window seats had been blocked up and its walls ran with water from the roof. It has now been brough alive again, with the help of Yorkshire craftsmen. The fireplace has been re-created with stone taken from a local quarry and cut in the stonemason’s yard of Ripon Cathedral. The bookshelves were made especially for the room and pick up features of the house, such as the quatrefoil shape on the doors, which is taken from the design of the Great Hall’s windows