Above the Great Hall

For many years visitors have viewed the area above the Great Hall on a guided tour. The large wooden rafters and posts were placed there in the 1760s by the architect John Carr to support the heavy and richly decorated ceiling below. For more on John Carr's work see Carr’s Replacement of the Entrance Hall Roof in Chapter Five of "An Architectural History of Towneley Hall" by W. John and Kit Smith, published by Heritage Trust for the North West in 2004.

In 1968 it was found that the centre of the ceiling was sagging. Three store rooms and floor boards in the roof area were removed and accumulated and dust and rubbish of the previous 200 years were removed and the repairs to the ceiling were completed in 1970. Only one of three store rooms was restored and visitors can clearly see the supporting structure.

The box in front of the turret clock contains a winch for the chandelier below in the Great Hall. The turret clock dates from around 1820 and was made by H. Blakeborough of Burnley, but there has been a clock here since at least 1719.

The African animal heads, hunting trophies, were donated by Captain Astley in 1956 and were first displayed in the Long Gallery. They are no longer considered suitable for display in a country house but museums never like to throw anything away, so the heads are now in Towneley's "attic".

South west side of hall roof area

Album Captions

  • South west side of hall roof area
  • Animal heads stored in hall roof area
  • Chandalier housing in hall roof area
  • Turret clock mechanism in hall roof area

Author: tk - August 2016