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Proposals for 'cottages near the old kennel' at Wimpole, Cambridgeshire, Plate V from the Wimpole Red Book

Humphry Repton (Bury St Edmunds 1752 – Romford 1818)

Category

Architecture / Drawings

Date

1801

Materials

Watercolour

Measurements

213 x 275 mm

Place of origin

England.

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Collection

Wimpole, Cambridgeshire

NT 206228

Summary

Humphry Repton (Bury St Edmunds 1752 – Romford 1818). Proposal for 'cottages near the old kennel' at Wimpole, Cambridgeshire, 1801, inscribed 'No:V', watercolour, (213 x 275mm), 1 flap overlay.

Full description

These ‘before’ and ‘after’ views typify the way that Repton sought to impose polite, gardenesque solutions on buildings that he felt needed improving. Here a red brick house, possibly the one shown on his map at the east end of the lower lake, is lime-washed and its gappy paling fence is replaced by a neat verandah whose posts support a trellised extension to the roof. A vine, wisteria or some other climber is used to quieten the appearance of the building in the landscape, and for the same reason, the white paintwork of the dormer windows— a colour that Repton generally disliked — is subdued. Repton particularly disliked red brick and disguising its gaudy colour and unifying the motley appearance of mixed materials with a render or colour wash is a common theme in many of his Red Books, and one that surfaces too in his published work. Repton mistakenly referred to this in his text as ‘sketch No.IV’: ‘There is a view of cottages near the old kennel which with the help of a wash over the bricks and a few laths from the roof may be changed as I have shewn in the sketch No. IV, and when the ruinous barn and stables &c. are removed this building backed by wood will become as pleasing an object of its kind as the far more sumptuous and costly buildings at the Tower are upon the hill’. Catalogue entry adapted from David Adshead, Wimpole Architectural drawings and topographical views, The National Trust, 2007

Provenance

Philip Yorke, 3rd Earl of Hardwicke, KG, MP, FRS, FSA, (1757–1834); bequeathed by Elsie Kipling, Mrs George Bambridge (1896 – 1976), daughter of Rudyard Kipling, to the National Trust together with Wimpole Hall, all its contents and an estate of 3000 acres.

Marks and inscriptions

Top right: No:V

Makers and roles

Humphry Repton (Bury St Edmunds 1752 – Romford 1818), landscape designer

References

Adshead 2007: David Adshead, Wimpole Architectural drawings and topographical views, The National Trust, 2007, p.102, no.196 Wimpole Hall, Cambridgeshire 1991 [The National Trust; David Souden] 1991, p.89

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