Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:


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Statutory Address:

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

Cheshire West and Chester (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SJ 40847 66064



SJ4066 THE GROVES 1932-1/6/148 (North side) 28/07/55 The Old Palace


Palace of the bishops of Chester, later YMCA hostel, now offices. Dated 1751, with C19 and C20 alterations. Stone-dressed red brick; hipped grey slate roofs. EXTERIOR: cellars and 3 storeys of 11 windows to main block. Stone plinth; quoins with concave rustication. Canted projecting entrance bay, probably later C18, has replaced door flanked by a 12-pane sash in each oblique face; three 12-pane sashes left of entrance bay and 5 to right. The first floor has 12-pane sashes, with 3 to entrance-bay; the second floor has 6-pane sashes. The sashes are recessed two-and-a-quarter inches; the entrance bay has simple painted stone sills and rubbed brick flat arches; other sashes have well-moulded sills of painted stone and rusticated wedge lintels with ornate keys. First-floor band; first-floor sillband to entrance bay; rainwater pipe with moulded lead head to each side of entrance bay, that to left dated 1751. Modillion cornice; 8-course brick parapet has stone corner blocks and coping. The left end has irregular pattern of sashes, most probably replaced. The right end of the main block has an inner-corner door to the ground floor; three 12-pane sashes to first floor and three of 6 panes to second floor, detailed as on main face of front. A one-bay right wing apparently of the original build; a probably mid C19 one-storey heavily stone-dressed lobby projects between the original building and a 3-storey 5-window recessed wing detailed as the entrance bay of the main block; the right end is canted, with a 12-pane ground floor sash in each face, one to each oblique face of the first and second floors. The exterior of the building other than the front door is virtually unaltered by C20 changes of use. INTERIOR: partly sub-divided, c1980, for office use, but retaining features of interest. A good open-well open-string stair of 6 flights but, if earlier description was correct, with turned balusters replacing the Chinese Chippendale balustrade then mentioned. A stone back stair with iron stick balusters and rail; a replaced secondary stair; some original 6-panel doors. A room with panelling, now painted and probably restored, on the ground floor, with one row of panels below dado and a tall row above dado; an excellent main room, now boardroom, on first floor with plasterwork intact including a

coved ceiling with exuberant mid C18 decoration; a good deal of minor features of C18 plasterwork; some fireplaces and overmantels. HISTORICAL NOTE: built for Bishop Peploe mid C18 according to Pevsner, but according to Harris occupied as the Bishop's Palace 1870, when the former palace in the Cathedral Precinct was replaced by the King's School, to 1921. (The Buildings of England: Pevsner N & Hubbard E: Cheshire: Harmondsworth: 1971-: 165-166; Bartholomew City Guides: Harris B: Edinburgh: 1979-: 145).

Listing NGR: SJ4084366069


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

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Pevsner, N, Hubbard, E, The Buildings of England: Cheshire, (1971), 165-166
Harris, B, 'Bartholomew City Guides' in Chester, (1979), 145


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

Images of England

Images of England was a photographic record of every listed building in England, created as a snap shot of listed buildings at the turn of the millennium. These photographs of the exterior of listed buildings were taken by volunteers between 1999 and 2008. The project was supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Date: 21 May 2001
Reference: IOE01/04052/07
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Michael J Tuck. Source Historic England Archive
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