St Ives Estate


Heritage Category:
Park and Garden
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:


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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Bradford (Metropolitan Authority)
Bradford (Metropolitan Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SE 09190 38513


A two-phase C19 designed landscape associated with an early C19 mansion and its C17 predecessor. The landscape incorporates both antiquarian and wild natural features and was partly conceived by William Ferrand, a radical Tory, whose philosophy stressed traditional values and the importance of the past.

HISTORIC DEVELOPMENT Harden Grange, comprising the house and its farm, was acquired by the Ferrand family in 1636. In the early C18 it was retained as a secondary residence with the farm let to tenants. A plan of 1805 depicts the original C17 house, farm with ancillary buildings, a variety of small enclosures, walled gardens and an orchard.

The designed landscape was developed between 1803 and 1837 by Walker Ferrand, younger brother of its owner Edward Ferrand. Records show that he spent more than £30000 in building and ornamenting the estate. Estate plans of 1817 and 1819 record some of the early changes including the construction of a new mansion (Listed Grade II), whose name was changed in 1858 to St Ives, the creation of gardens in its vicinity and the construction of a large rectangular fishpond. Walker's diaries from the 1820s record further changes including the creation of ponds in Cuckoo Nest Wood and the establishment of woodland walks; the fact that in March 1821 he was busy 'planting everywhere' indicates the level of investment taking place. Other developments at this time include the landscaping of the large fishpond to create a more natural feature befitting a landscape park, the establishment of flower gardens with a green house, walled gardens and a fountain, the construction of an ice house, the building of garden paths and walls, a new kitchen garden and the erection of an arcade to the front of Old Harden Grange to enhance the Romantic style of the pleasure grounds. An estate plan of 1845 shows how the landscape had evolved to this point, and also depicts new tree planting in The Coppice, north east of the mansion, to create a parkland effect.

Edward Ferrand died in 1837 and the estate passed to his sister Sarah, whose son William managed her estates and was resident at Harden Grange from at least 1843. This phase of development led to the creation of the Romantic landscape, rich in historical associations, which dominates today and saw the incorporation of natural features such as expanses of moorland and outcropping rocks into its design. Ferrand, along with his wife Fanny, and mother-in-law, Lady Blantyre, re designed the pleasure grounds, established the terrace walk and the extension of Cuckoo Nest Wood westwards to incorporate the dramatic remains of an old sandstone quarry. The northern part of the estate was also developed with a number of rough tracks giving access to features such as the `Druid's Altar', a large and prominent slab of rock, apparently the inspiration for the scene of a chartist rally in Ferrand's friend Disraeli's 'Sybil'. Harden Moor was enclosed in 1855. There is a long standing tradition that Harden Moor was the site of a Civil War battle and that graves are present; this area along with an earthwork said to be the remains of an entrenchment were consequently excluded from agricultural or forestry use and was treated by Ferrand as a `Heather Park' thus preserving its wildness. This aspect of the designed landscape was consistent with William Ferrand's philosophy as a radical Tory and a leading member of the Young England movement which believed in traditional values and the importance of the past. Landscaping continued throughout the second half of the C19 until William's death in 1899, to include the creation of a park to the south of Cuckoo Nest Wood and a parkland setting east of the mansion between Blind Lane and the kitchen garden.

Although Ferrand's heir, William II, made little change to the C19 landscape, he continued to develop the historical aspect by including date stones both new and very old. By 1918 parts of the estate were being sold, and what remained was bought by Bingley Urban District Council in 1928. C20 changes include the insertion of a golf course and club house, a riding school and a new car park.

DESCRIPTION LOCATION, AREA, BOUNDARIES, LANDFORM, SETTING St Ives Estate is situated immediately between the towns of Harden to the west and Bingley. The registered site covers an area of c. 217 ha and includes the core of the designed landscape. The register boundary is as follows: on the north, it follows the boundary on the south side of Altar Lane extending northwards to include the Druid's Altar, a rocky crag giving views northwards. On the west, it follows the eastern boundary bordering Keithley Road. The south side follows the boundary bordering the north side of Harden road and on the west, it follows the estate boundary with the exception of the extreme south western corner where it follows the southern edge of a copse around a depot and housing. The elevated site occupies the northern slopes of the Harden Valley, although the mansion occupies a plateau. The site commands Harden Vale with more distant views of wider, open countryside.

ENTRANCES AND APPROACHES The principle south entrance off Harden Road is flanked by a pair of early C19 gate piers with bands of vermiculated rustication and ball finials (Listed Grade II). The drive curves around Bell Bank Wood, turns left and runs west through wooded parkland, lined with specimen trees including a veteran Sweet Chestnut tree, to approach the mansion through a C20 set of gate piers with ball finials. The drive formerly ran further north before turning left to join Cross Green Lane which continues in a south westerly direction and approaches St Ives Mansion from the north. A small late C19 lodge known as Betty's Lodge (Listed Grade II) stands at the point where the present drive turns west; the original unmetalled drive can be seen continuing north through a gated entrance. The west entrance off Keithley Road has a pair of plain square gate piers with ball finials and a lodge on the south side of the drive; the latter heads north east through Cuckoo Nest Wood and approaches Home Farm from the west.

PRINCIPAL BUILDING St Ives Mansion, now a care home (Listed Grade II), stands at the centre of the site. It is a two storey house of sandstone with a complex development. It forms a U-shape with a Doric porte-cochere set in the centre of the rear. The main elevation has eleven bays of differing size, some projecting. Old Harden Grange (Listed Grade II) lies immediately to the north; C17 in date, it is L-shaped in plan and of two storeys. All windows are double-chamfered mullions with hoodmoulds over ground-floor windows. The first floor is partly obscured by an entrance bay at right angles with doorway with Tudor-arched lintel flanked by Doric columns with entablature, cornice and much weathered heraldic shield. The lintel has a much weathered inscription and an attached wall has a doorway set in it with cyma-moulded surround the lintel dated 1701. This forms a link to The Cottage (Listed Grade II).

GARDENS AND PLEASURE GROUNDS These fall into two separate areas each with a distinct character: the formal gardens, and the wooded pleasure grounds.

The south west front of St Ives mansion overlooks the formal gardens which lie to the south and west and comprise a terrace, roughly rectangular lawned areas containing the earthwork remains of a croquet lawn and the circular water filled basin of a fountain. Specimen trees in this area include Irish Yews and the edges of the lawns are softened by the woodland edge to the south. Incorporated into the formal gardens at the north west end of the mansion are the ruined remains of the former Old Harden Grange and its attached walls and cottage (Listed Grade II) which were preserved as an ornament and Gothicised in the early C19 by the addition of an arcade to their front. A terrace walk leads from the south west front of the mansion, past the heated rear wall of a former green house on the right, in a south westerly direction with its west end marked by a pair of low stone pillars. This walk gives access, through a Gardenesque arrangement of trees and shrubs, to Coppice Pond, a shallow artificial lake fed from springs from the slopes above. This pond supplied the cascade in Cuckoo Nest Wood, served as a fish pond and also provided the water supply for the mansion. Between the lake and the mansion is an early C19 folly in the form of an ornamental bridge (Listed Grade II) that spans a rock-hewn path, passing beneath the present road to join a wooded path towards the mansion. The remains of the walled garden (Listed Grade II) are situated immediately north west of the mansion between old Harden Grange and the stable block; the dressed stone wall is stepped with paired ball finials either side of a gateway. The interior is overgrown with remnants of C19 trees and shrubs.

The wooded pleasure grounds occupying the land to the west and south of the mansion comprise Cuckoo Nest Wood and Coppice Pond Wood and contain a variety of C19 trees and shrubs. A network of paths now criss-cross the woodland leading to and around the pond in Cuckoo Nest Wood and the larger Coppice Pond; the most dramatic feature of this woodland garden is the former waterfall which cascaded to full length of the wooded hillside, inspired by wild landscapes. This feature, restored in 2004, was fed from Coppice Pond whose outlet was directed down a series of cascades edged with boulders and trees. A small dis-used quarry has been incorporated into the grounds as a picturesque feature. Other features in these areas include water courses, enhanced by large boulders and stone flags, a large stone water pit and a carriage drive edged with a stone kerb. The C17 Cuckoo Nest cottages (Listed Grade II) with their early architectural features, date stones and initials of Ferrand forebears, were deliberately retained within the wood, and footpaths lead to these features further enhancing the theme of the link between past and present.

PARKLAND Two main areas of parkland exist at St Ives Estate; both are landscaped in the traditional English natural landscape style favoured throughout this period by most landscape designers. In addition the moorland crags to the north of the estate include dramatic incidents. A park of c. 30 acres in extent is situated on land to the south of Cuckoo Nest Wood and Grange Wood, marked as Low Park on the late C19 2nd edition Ordnance Survey map. This is bounded on the east by the main drive, with a mid C19 ha-ha with metal railings forms its northern boundary serving to separate it from Cuckoo Nest Wood. Today the park is grassland with natural trees and linear tree lines indicating the location of former field boundaries. Extensive views beyond to the west are available from the main drive to the east. To the north east of the estate a parkland setting was created near to the walled kitchen garden; this area also contains the remains of denuded ridge and furrow cultivation indicating the pre-parkland land use. This area is occupied by a golf course which stretches northwards to the northern boundary of the estate, retaining parkland trees within it and around it and modern planted barriers.

The moorland crags comprise an area of enclosed moorland landscape to the north of the estate incorporating a number of viewpoints including the dramatic and Romantically styled 'Druid's Altar' a craggy eminence overlooking the Aire Valley on the northern edge of the park; and 'Lady Blantyne's Rock, an immense boulder in the western area of the park, where she would sit and sketch and where views were once afforded of the distant eye catcher `St. David's Ruin'. This is also the location of an obelisk erected after Ferrand's own death and inscribed with his life's works and achievements.

KITCHEN GARDEN The early C19 kitchen garden with curved north west and south west corners is situated north east of the mansion; it is bounded partly by estate railings and high stone walls and contains an unusual pedestrian entrance in a curved stone tunnel. Within this garden a short section of the north wall of a former inner brick walled garden remains. The inner garden contains a new building constructed in 1985 for the Sports Turf Research Institute. A slip garden is attached to the north east side of the kitchen garden.

OTHER LAND The Home Farm of c.1870, situated to the north of the mansion is set around a central courtyard and part of it has been converted to office and cafe use. A stable block (Listed Grade II) is attached to the east; this was constructed in c.1900 and is arranged on three sides of a courtyard with a 5-bay symmetrical central section topped by an ornate wind vane. The wings have coped gables with kneelers and finials. That to right has a date stone in a blind arch over 4-light flat-faced mullioned window. A re-used C17 cross of the Knights Templars is set in the apex of the gable. A set of stone dog kennels with a pitched roof and bearing a date stone of 1859 and the initials W. F, is situated at the south west corner of Cuckoo Nest Wood. The single-storey building has a central entrance flanked by windows through one gable and the two doorways through the other. Immediately to the north east of the stables, set into a steep slope, are the remains of an icehouse constructed in 1827 (Listed Grade II); this is a single storey stone building with a semicircular-arched lintel with false keystone set in the gable.

REFERENCES P Eyres, Two Airedale Landscapes St. Ives and Saltaire, New Arcadian Journal (1987-88), pp.3-23 P Eyres, St Ives: The Ferrand estate and the Picturesque landscape garden, New Arcadian Journal (1987-88), pp.41-62 Norman Gash, `Ferrand, William (1809-1889', Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, (2004) [, accessed 6 July 2008] T Mowl Gentlemen & Players: Gardners of the English Landscape (2000) G Sheeran Landscape Gardens in West Yorkshire 1680-1880, (1990) A Tupholme (Yorkshire Gardens Trust) `St Ives, (Named Harden Grange before 1858)' unpublished account (revised 2006)

MAPS OS 6" to 1 mile: 1st edition published 1852 OS 1:2500: 2nd edition published 1893 OS 1:2500: 3rd edition published 1908

Plan of Harden Grange, 1805, Bradford Central Library Plan of Harden Grange Farm, undated, West Yorkshire Archive Service, Bradford. A Map of the Hamlet of Harden within the Township and Parish of Bingley in the West Riding of the County of York made in 1817 by Jonathon Taylor, and the accompanying tithe book, West Yorkshire Archive Service, Bradford. Map of the Hamlet of Harden in the Township and Parish of Bingley in the West Riding of the County of York by Joseph Fox, 1819, West Yorkshire Archive Service, Bradford.


This C19 designed landscape is designated for the following principal reasons: * the early-mid C19 phase is a good example of a parkland landscape * the mid-late C19 phase developed a Romantic and wild landscape imbued with a variety of historical and mythical associations linking the past with the present * The conscious enhancement of a naturally dramatic landscape reflects the fashion of the time for nature as a powerful force * It manifests in physical form its association with the philosophy of an important C19 Tory radical, a close friend of Disraeli and a leading member of the Young England movement * It has strong group value with more than a dozen Listed Buildings and provides the setting for an important Grade II Listed mansion and its Grade II predecessor


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:
Parks and Gardens


This garden or other land is registered under the Historic Buildings and Ancient Monuments Act 1953 within the Register of Historic Parks and Gardens by Historic England for its special historic interest.

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