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Thread: King John's Hunting Lodge

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    Senior Member marky's Avatar
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    Default King John's Hunting Lodge

    I suppose the ultimate date is on the gate of 'Park Lodge'...AD 1207. I'm not sure what, if any, is original in this building, though.


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    Quote Originally Posted by marky View Post
    I suppose the ultimate date is on the gate of 'Park Lodge'...AD 1207. I'm not sure what, if any, is original in this building, though.
    Hi Marky

    Certainly the date on the gate "1207" is based on the designation in Robert Griffiths' history of Toxteth as the "Higher Lodge" of King John but whether such a lodge was actually built in 1207 at that spot or sometime during the middle ages appears unknown. I somehow think 1207 was a bit early for the house to be built. As you probably know there are pictured bits and pieces of slabs of sandstone that were supposedly from the facade of the original lodge photographed on the lawn of the house shown in Griffiths' book (p. 26).

    Mike Royden on his history site, under the entry for Otterspool, in talking about both the Higher and Lower Lodges, only says, "In 1596, the ancient hunting park of Toxteth, which had for 400 years been inhabited only by deer and their keepers, was disafforested by the Earl of Derby. . . . Before the disafforestation, there were two hunting lodges erected in the Ancient Park [emphasis mine]; the Higher Lodge at the junction where Lodge Lane originally met Ullet Road, and the other, the Lower Lodge, lay next to Otterspool, just inside the boundary wall of Toxteth. (The Lower Lodge was demolished in 1863 and Otterspool Station built on the site)."

    Pictured in Griffiths' book pp. 12-13 in a photograph and drawing are sandstone "architraves" supposed to be from King John's Lower Lodge that were said to be in the vicinity of Otterspool Station at the time his book was published (1907). I looked for these in the early Sixties and never found them, even wrote to the Liverpool Corporation about them in 1962 and got a polite answer but no information on where they might have disappeared to. However, one thing about them is that from the photograph and sketch they appear to be from a wide, shallow Tudor-style arch that would not have matched the architecture of King John's reign, which would have been more Early English with narrow pointed arches or possibly Norman. So that again makes me doubt that either lodge was a 1207 structure, or at least if they were, to think they were probably remodeled or rebuilt later.

    Chris
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    Quote Originally Posted by marky View Post
    I suppose the ultimate date is on the gate of 'Park Lodge'...AD 1207. I'm not sure what, if any, is original in this building, though.
    Not sure it counts as a date 'stamp' as such. It fascinates me this gate. Thousands of people drive past it every day. I wonder if they realize its significance.

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    PhilipG
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    I wonder what the significance of 1207 in this case is, or what the owner is trying to say?
    1207 is when King John granted Liverpool its first charter.
    I don't think the charter included Toxteth Park, so why should 1207 appear on one of the lodges of Toxteth Park?
    It has been said (Liverpolitana) that Toxteth Park was created in 1204.
    As far as I know the actual date of the erection of either lodge has never been mentioned (if the dates were ever recorded in the first place).
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhilipG View Post
    I wonder what the significance of 1207 in this case is, or what the owner is trying to say?
    1207 is when King John granted Liverpool its first charter.
    I don't think the charter included Toxteth Park, so why should 1207 appear on one of the lodges of Toxteth Park?
    It has been said (Liverpolitana) that Toxteth Park was created in 1204.
    As far as I know the actual date of the erection of either lodge has never been mentioned (if the dates were ever recorded in the first place).
    Phil, apparently the Park Lodge (with the 1207 date) was the site of King John's original Hunting Lodges all those years ago, his play ground I can only assume being Toxteth as it was then.

    The house is said to still retain some of the original features of that hunting lodge. I'd love to get inside and have a look.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kev View Post
    Phil, apparently the Park Lodge (with the 1207 date) was the site of King John's original Hunting Lodges all those years ago, his play ground I can only assume being Toxteth as it was then.

    The house is said to still retain some of the original features of that hunting lodge. I'd love to get inside and have a look.
    It's just been converted into apartments, Kev, so you might try renting one.
    I know parts of the building are very old & part of one of the 2 hunting lodges.
    All I'm saying is I don't know why 1207 should have been put on the gates.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PhilipG View Post
    It's just been converted into apartments, Kev, so you might try renting one.
    I know parts of the building are very old & part of one of the 2 hunting lodges.
    All I'm saying is I don't know why 1207 should have been put on the gates.
    I think its a statement on the significance of the building's history and connection with King John, plus the signing of the Charter in 1207.
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    PhilipG
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kev View Post
    I think its a statement on the significance of the building's history and connection with King John, plus the signing of the Charter in 1207.
    You could well be right, Kev, but as the date stands on its own, most people will think it means that was when the building was first built.
    And then it will become another "fact".

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kev View Post
    Phil, apparently the Park Lodge (with the 1207 date) was the site of King John's original Hunting Lodges all those years ago, his play ground I can only assume being Toxteth as it was then.

    The house is said to still retain some of the original features of that hunting lodge. I'd love to get inside and have a look.
    I was given a guided tour of the inside of the house back in the early 1960's by the then lady of the house. I remember there was a big fireplace that looked old. I should say the house itself is more likely seventeenth or eighteenth century than earlier. Is there anything about it in any of the Liverpool architecture books?

    Chris
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisGeorge View Post
    I was given a guided tour of the inside of the house back in the early 1960's by the then lady of the house. I remember there was a big fireplace that looked old. I should say the house itself is more likely seventeenth or eighteenth century than earlier. Is there anything about it in any of the Liverpool architecture books?

    Chris
    All Joseph Sharples says is: "On the left, at the corner of Sefton Park Road, is Park Lodge. Unremarkable externally, it is supposed to incorporate masonry from one of the lodges of the former royal hunting ground of Toxteth Park." (Page 280).

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisGeorge View Post
    I was given a guided tour of the inside of the house back in the early 1960's by the then lady of the house. I remember there was a big fireplace that looked old. I should say the house itself is more likely seventeenth or eighteenth century than earlier. Is there anything about it in any of the Liverpool architecture books?

    Chris
    Chris, the fireplace is supposed to be almost identical to the tudor ones at Queen Elizabeths Keep at Kenilworth Castle.
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    Default King John - Hunting Lodge

    hi, i'm a newbie and would like to let interested people know about about king john's higher hunting lodge which is currently my home. it is an honour which has fallen to ourselves <no idea why us> to restore this interesting building.,the very core of which is the original lodge. our solicitor remarked that the previous owners had replied to the question of "has it been extended with "three times in 800 years. i find it amazing that its presence is such a locally well known secret and yet the city council had no idea of its existence. we had no inkling of its provenance until we had practically purchased it. it is a magical place which has gems in abundance, even the garden was designed by herbert rouse!it is essentially the very first scouse house and we are indeed fortunate to be part of its rich tapestry.

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    Hi there,

    Refering to a previous post I made about this gem:

    Park Lodge, Sefton Park Rd (which used to be part of Lodge Lane). It is believed to contain some of the original structure of King Johns Tudor hunting Lodge which gave its name to Lodge Lane. The fireplaces inside are the same in detail as some in Queen Elizabeths Keep at Kenworth Castle.



    I expect that photographs of inside are very rare. Would you be willing to share some with us of the inside plus progress of the resotoration?

    Kev

    PS, I've merged this post with another thread so it now contains plenty of info
    Last edited by Kev; 02-02-2007 at 12:15 PM.
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    MissInformed
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    Quote Originally Posted by king john View Post
    hi, i'm a newbie and would like to let interested people know about about king john's higher hunting lodge which is currently my home. it is an honour which has fallen to ourselves <no idea why us> to restore this interesting building.,the very core of which is the original lodge. our solicitor remarked that the previous owners had replied to the question of "has it been extended with "three times in 800 years. i find it amazing that its presence is such a locally well known secret and yet the city council had no idea of its existence. we had no inkling of its provenance until we had practically purchased it. it is a magical place which has gems in abundance, even the garden was designed by herbert rouse!it is essentially the very first scouse house and we are indeed fortunate to be part of its rich tapestry.
    wow, what an amazing piece of news!!
    i am sure I speak for everybody when I say, we would love to see some pics of the interior...
    And, that I am so jealous!

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    yeah I agree .. that's soo interesting

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    Default king john

    park lodge is a family home and has never been converted into apartments as has been stated by philip g. and hopefully never will be. the 1207 on the gates is the connection between king john and the higher lodge as it was originally called. if chris is accurate with his recollection the dates, 1960's the rathbone family lived in the lodge and so it would have been mrs rathbone showing him around.. the house itself as i have said previously has been extended 3 times in 800 years. there are differing periods within the house and the large fireplace he recalls has a fire back dated 1588 this is in the dining hall <saracen room>.i have one photograph which i think is from the 1930's. which i will post when i get my son to show me how!
    it is relatively easy to become a house detective living here.there are so many clues and signs of times gone by. for example in four rooms the ceilings are our floors in the rooms above, there are no voids.all our wiring is surface mounted.
    park lodge has never failed to challenge and excite us indeed it has become our personal folly. in a few weeks your very own kev is coming for a guided tour. besides which of course i will keep you posted of our progress.

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    PhilipG
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    Quote Originally Posted by king john View Post
    park lodge is a family home and has never been converted into apartments as has been stated by philip g. and hopefully never will be.
    Dear King John.

    I'm very pleased to hear that Park Lodge hasn't been converted into apartments, but in my defence I have to say that I believed this notice - which is attached to your property - is genuine.
    I was always under the impression that "For Sale" signs should only be affixed to the property they refer to.
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    dear Philip, my husband allowed a developer to erect the sign on our fence. the sign actually refers to st. gabriel's convent, which has been converted into apartments. we had forgotten it was there and come tomorrow will ask for it to be removed. it is not illegal to post a sign referring to another building, only if it has been done without permission.
    i was looking at your thumbnail attachments. when were you here?

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    Quote Originally Posted by king john View Post

    park lodge has never failed to challenge and excite us indeed it has become our personal folly. in a few weeks your very own kev is coming for a guided tour. besides which of course i will keep you posted of our progress.
    kept that one quiet Kev hehe

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    Quote Originally Posted by king john View Post
    dear Philip, my husband allowed a developer to erect the sign on our fence. the sign actually refers to st. gabriel's convent, which has been converted into apartments. we had forgotten it was there and come tomorrow will ask for it to be removed. it is not illegal to post a sign referring to another building, only if it has been done without permission.
    i was looking at your thumbnail attachments. when were you here?

    I live not far away.
    I took more photos today.
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    Folks, I've just got back from an fantastic hour at this gem of a building, I'm on cloud nine to say the least and will post some pics later.

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    Hi Kev

    Excellent news. I am greatly looking forward to seeing the pics.

    Chris
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    PhilipG
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisGeorge View Post
    Hi Kev

    Excellent news. I am greatly looking forward to seeing the pics.

    Chris
    Me too!

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    Exclamation King John's Hunting Lodge

    I was excited as I walked upto the house. I've driven past this hundreds of times and always wondered what was inside, now was my chance to find out. Paula (member King John), who owns the house with her husband had opened the gates for me.



    Lets start outside:

















    On the next photograph if you look closely, between the roof and the wall is a feature that dates back to the Norman period, when the roof would have been flat.







    Lets go inside:





    Here's that fireplace:





    Inscription reads - 1588 'EFC'. There's an anchor on it too.















    The thickness of this archway is a clue to the age of this part of the house and was where the original door was all those years ago:









    Bathroom and toilet:









    The bath below can also be found in Speke Hall, obviously not the same one.





    Going upstairs - this stair way takes us into the space that can be seen clearly from the outside here:









    Look what I found in the corner, an old map of Liverpool, probably original.



    The other pics can be found here

    The house seemed huge and I couldn't get over how significant this building is to the city of Liverpool, yet it isn't listed.

    Paula talked with passion about the Liverpool and the house and their plans. The tough restoration job is being done by Paula and her husband and I'm glad to say that it was purchased by the family just before a developer got their hands on it. If the developers had - I certainly wouldn't have been able to get in.

    I can't thank Paula and her family enough for letting little old me inside for a pretty much free wander around, every time I turned a corner, another door was opened for me to look into and every room has a story attached!

    Hope you enjoy the pictures people, the place is so special
    Last edited by Kev; 02-19-2007 at 08:34 PM.
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    Brilliant photo's well done - thanks for sharing them

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    OMG ! What fabulous photos of a wonderful house. I didn't know anything about the existance of this house before. Thanks so much to Paula and her family for allowing us to see. Thanks Kev for taking the trouble to post all the photies. Brilliant !

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    theninesisters
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    Fantastic photo's Kev! Spot on!

    I was around that location at the weekend! My uncle was brought up in the house that John Brodie (City Engineer) lived - no 28 Ullet Road. And when John Brodie died, his (my uncle) uncle, Reg Arrowsmith, purchased the house and made it in to flats for the family to live in. Reg Arrowsmith for the older generation on here owned lots of motor garages, including the now demolished Cubbin & North site on Ullet Road and Dudlow Motor's in Childwall to name but a few.
    Last edited by theninesisters; 03-23-2007 at 06:59 PM.

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    Great pix Kev, thank them for everyone on this forum. It was nice that they shared.
    You can always count on Americans to do the right thing - after they've tried everything else.
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    Excellent work, Kev.
    Thank you King John (Paula).
    They're really photos for the archive.
    That ceiling is fabulous.

    Whereabouts is the oldest part of the house?
    Is it well hidden inside subsequent building work, or is it possible to see anything from the outside?

    The views of Fritz Spiegl's home are great too.

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    Hi Kev

    Fabulous photographs, Kev. And thanks to Paula and her husband for graciously allowing our intrepid leader to tour the lodge.

    In the matter of the cast iron fireback with what you thought were the initials "EFC 1588" I am fairly sure that it is either "IFC" or "JFC" not "EFC" -- the letter "I" often being rendered with such a nobbly fashion, and the name for James I in Latin being rendered "Iacobus" for "Jacobus" Latin for James on coins of that king. I note that there also seems to be a shield to the left of the date which might be a clue to which family owned the fireback if the heraldic designs can be interpreted.

    Chris
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