Uppingham Cricket Pavilion


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
Upper Playing Field, Glaston Road, Uppingham, Rutland, LE15 9PX


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Statutory Address:
Upper Playing Field, Glaston Road, Uppingham, Rutland, LE15 9PX

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

Rutland (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:


Cricket pavilion built in 1923 to the designs of Sir Walter John Tapper.

Reasons for Designation

The Uppingham cricket pavilion, built in 1923 to the designs of Sir Walter John Tapper, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:

Architectural interest:

* the deep thatched roof sweeping low over the eaves, the stone mullioned windows with leaded lights, and the gabled crosswings combine to create a finely proportioned and picturesque composition, resulting in a late Arts and Crafts design of considerable architectural merit; * the interior is notable for the quality of its detailing, such as the delicate foliate plasterwork on the ceiling and the ornate window ironmongery;

* it retains numerous original features, including the bench lockers that line the changing rooms and the panelled doors with long strap hinges;

* Sir Walter John Tapper was prominent in his profession and many of his buildings have already been recognised as being of national importance through listing;

Historic interest * the internal panelling is enhanced by the inscriptions of individual names making up the cricket teams dating back to 1856, some of whom went on to become nationally renowned players;

Group value:

* it has group value with the Grade II listed 44 North Street East to the west, as well as with many listed buildings along High Street East which runs westward from the pavilion.


The cricket pavilion at Uppingham School was built in 1923 to the designs of Sir Walter John Tapper (1861-1935). He was chief assistant in the practice of Bodley and Garner from 1882 to 1893 after which he worked in partnership with J L Davenport. Tapper was consulting architect to York Minster from 1907 to 1935, consulting architect to the Gas Light & Coke Company from 1924, surveyor to Westminster Abbey from 1928, and honorary consulting architect to the Incorporated Church Building Society. From 1920 he worked in partnership with his son, Michael John Tapper (born 1894), who continued the practice after his death on 21 September 1935. Tapper is associated with over 30 listed buildings, some of which he made additions to or restored.

Uppingham School was founded in 1584 by Robert Johnson, the Archdeacon of Leicester. According to the school’s website, the first recorded cricket match was in 1815, and the sport continued to be played throughout the C19. The first cricket pavilion was built on The Upper, a sports field on the eastern edge of the town, in 1864. This is depicted on the second edition Ordnance Survey map of 1904 which also shows a group of buildings, run by the Toon family as an undertakers and carpenters, on the site of the current pavilion in the north-west corner of the playing field. A commemorative panel in the pavilion records that it was the gift of William Seeds Patterson, Captain of the cricket team 1871-73, on a site given by the wife and nephew of Charles Ernest Green who was Captain in the 1860s.

The pavilion has been subject to alterations, including the remodelling of the changing rooms in 1955 and, it is thought, the replacement of the entrance gates. In 2000 it was discovered that there were major structural problems with the balcony roof supports, clock and score box area, so in the following year these were removed, along with the external staircase. A new gable was constructed for the clock and a new tiled canopy was built over the pavilion door. The low brick wall of the veranda, shown in historic photographs, was also removed.


Cricket pavilion built in 1923 to the designs of Sir Walter John Tapper.

MATERIALS: the building is rendered and painted white (presumably covering brick) with stone dressings and a thatched roof.

PLAN: the pavilion is located on the north-west corner of The Upper and has a U-shaped plan with a long central range and short crosswings.

EXTERIOR: the pavilion is in a picturesque Arts and Crafts style. It is a single-storey building with a prominent hipped roof which has a scalloped ridge and a central cupola with a circular thatched roof surmounted by a weather vane. The entrance on the north-west elevation is beneath a central gable with a date stone of 1923 within the gable head. The eight-panel wooden door has raised rails and stiles and is flanked by casement windows in wooden frames filled by square leaded lights with wooden sills. The whole is under a continuous wooden lintel which is chamfered above the openings. To either side of the door is a row of six mullion windows with the same leaded lights (as have all the windows) but without sills or lintels. This fenestration is followed on both sides by a plank and batten door with a small octagonal glazed opening. At each end of the façade are three smaller, square windows with an additional window on the left side. The north-east gable end is lit by a three-light mullion window, followed by a small top-opening casement and a door of vertical panels with long strap hinges. The south-west gable end is similar except that the front door and small windows are later replacements.

At either end of the south-east elevation are the projecting gable ends of the short crosswings. These are lit by two pairs of three-light mullions in stone surrounds. The central double-leaf panelled doors have glazed upper panels filled with leaded lights. The small tiled canopy over the doorway is a later addition. Above this a triangular gable, with plain wooden bargeboards and a clock within the gable head, is positioned wholly within the roof space. It originally formed a small balcony with a score board but this has since been blocked up. Flanking the central bay are four-light mullions in stone surrounds. The original wooden railings of the verandah project from each corner of the pavilion. INTERIOR: this retains much of the original fixtures, fittings and joinery, including the decorative window ironmongery, the lock plate on the inner face of the front door with its pierced decorative edging, and the plank and batten doors with strap hinges in the subsidiary areas. The principal room in the long range has a canted ceiling with delicate raised plasterwork of foliate designs. The room is lined with square panelling with moulded edges and two panelled doors at either end. Many of the panels are inscribed in gold lettering with the names of cricket teams dating back to 1856. Some of the individual players went on to become highly successful and well-known cricketers, such as Percy Chapman (1900-1961) who captained the England cricket team between 1926 and 1931; and Jonathan Agnew MBE (born 1960), the cricket broadcaster and former professional cricketer. At the north-east end the panels incorporate shaped frames containing photographs of previous captains, and there are three mounted bats and a ball of particular historic significance. The doors at each end of the principal room lead into subsidiary rooms, including two cloakrooms which retain the original wooden bench lockers along three of the walls. SUBSIDIARY FEATURES: the entrance gates, at the north-west corner of the site, are double-leaf wooden gates consisting of two lower panels with uprights above and an arched rail with wide strap hinges. The gates are flanked by a pair of tall square piers of stone ashlar with shallow plinths and moulded caps.




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

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