An Inventory of the Historical Monuments in the Town of Stamford. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1977.
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Architects and Craftsmen
This biographical list is confined, with few exceptions, to those masons, carpenters, builders and architects who lived and worked in Stamford and whose work may be identified. Journeymen and men whose status is at present uncertain have been excluded. The chief sources used in compiling the list are the Hall Books, recording admissions to freedom and to scot and lot; the Chamberlains' Accounts, recording expenditure by the Town Council after 1710; and the Exeter Day Books recording the building activities of the Earls of Exeter between 1770 and 1800. Other information comes from the court rolls, churchwardens' accounts, Browne's Hospital accounts, parish registers, Exeter MSS, the Mercury, and the Dictionaries of Colvin and Gunnis.
Bingham, Edward (d. 1796). Marble mason, of Peterborough. Best known as a monumental mason; he signed tablets in 1751 and 1782 at All Saints', and 1788 and 1789 in St. Martin's. He did work for Lord Exeter at Burghley including two lions in 1775 and marble window sills in 1790. He made a chimney-piece in 1787 for 35 St. Mary's Street (366) costing £8.11.6., two more for the Assembly Rooms (58) in 1793 costing £26.9.0., and two for 27 St. Mary's Street (361) in 1795 for £20.12.0.
Boyfield, John II. (c. 1754–1825). Builder, first worked under Christopher Staveley at Melton Mowbray as carpenter; on death of cousin(?) John I, joined his widow Elizabeth to run firm (Mercury, 4 Feb. 1779). Lived at, and rebuilt in 1791, 1 All Saints' Place (70). Important business; employed by the Town and at Burghley. Worked in 1785 at the George Hotel (239); in 1791 at 4 St. Mary's Place (342); in 1796 at Corporation Buildings, Scotgate (422); and in 1799 at Assembly Rooms extension (58).
Browning, Bryan (1773–1856). Architect, born at Thurlby, Lincs. (parish register). Around 1819–22 had a London address; 1835 said to be at Northorpe, Lincs.; in 1826 married Ruth Snart of Stamford and moved to Stamford c. 1838. In 1840s he was retained by Exeter as architect for £180 p.a.; by 1847 was practising at 16 Broad Street. His Stamford work includes the workhouse of 1835 (demolished); rebuilding S.E. pillar in St. Mary's church, and layout of Blackfriars Estate in 1840; internal vestry, St. Mary's church, 1841; Stamford Institution (59), 1842; remodelling of Barn Hill House (96), 1843; Grant's iron foundry (451), 1845; 4–5 Red Lion Square and 1 High Street (279), 1848; and Byard House, St. Paul's Street (380), 1851.
Browning, Edward (1816–82). Architect, son of Bryan by first wife; began in father's firm and may have been involved in some of his later work. His Stamford work includes Town Bridge and adjacent work (64), 1847–9, the bridge with his brother Henry; cemetery chapels, 1852; Corn Exchange, Broad Street, 1858; St. Michael's National School, 1860; Butter Market, Red Lion Square, 1861; High School, St. Martin's, 1875; and St. George's vicarage, 1881. He or his father were responsible for the W. porch of St. George's in 1848, and the restoration of St. Mary's chancel in 1849.
Clarke, William (d. 1786). Mason, admitted to scot and lot 1738. Lived at 13 St. Paul's Street (376) which he bought as sitting tenant in 1743 and probably refronted. Married Mary daughter of William Lindsey, carpenter, and his relations with that family appear to have been close. Besides small jobs for the Town he built in 1761 a house in Water Street for £60 (demolished), the Theatre (60) in 1766, and in c. 1768 he rebuilt a house 'near Burghley Lane'. In 1758 he arbitrated in a dispute over damages to a house in Broad Street (deeds, 9 Broad Street).
Cole, John (d. 1797). Mason, freeman 1766. Did maintenance work at Browne's Hospital, 1783–1800, his business being continued by his widow and son. In 1791 he advertised for no less than 10 journeymen; in 1792 built 37–9 St. Mary's Street (367), and in 1794, 1–2 St. Mary's Hill (331). He also was a monumental mason, signing an oval tablet at Tinwell in 1796; his only known apprentice was William Harrison (1790–7). Subscribed to George Richardson's New Designs in Architecture (1792).
Collins, Charles (c. 1788–1863). Builder, began work in Stamford c. 1828; admitted to scot and lot 1834. Contractor with R. Woolston for St. Michael's church, 1835–6. In 1844 made pews in St. Martin's and St. George's churches with R. Woolston; in 1849 built 10 High Street (176).
Dixon, John (d. 1782). Joiner, son of Joseph, carpenter; admitted to scot and lot 1748; his marriage settlement in 1750 included 2 All Saints' Place. In 1762 he bought 33 St. Peter's Street (413), and in 1778 he leased 34 St. Peter's Street (414), where he seems to have lived. He did small jobs for the Town between 1760 and 1781; maintenance at Browne's Hospital; and in 1759, with Robert Timperon, cabinet maker, wainscotted St. George's church. Having helped survey the new sheepmarket in 1777 he made the pens for it in 1781, and in the same year rebuilt a house, probably (384), in St. Paul's Street. In 1780 he made plans for wainscot and removable seating for the Court at the Town Hall.
Dixon, Joseph (d. 1787). Mason, son of Joseph, carpenter; admitted to scot and lot 1767 when he was said to have been born in Stamford and to be a citizen of London where he became free of the Mason's Company in 1760. In 1783 Lord Exeter paid him for drawing plans. He is probably the Joseph Dixon who built Blackfriars' Bridge, London, to Mylne's designs, 1760–9; worked for Holland 1767–70; became bankrupt in 1778; died in 1787 (PRO, PCC 171 Major); buried in St. Mary's church, Battersea, which he designed in 1775.
Dixon, Richard (fl. c. 1765–78). Carpenter, son of Joseph, carpenter; admitted to scot and lot 1767. In 1766–78 was surveying and working for Lord Exeter at Burghley and London. His brother John is described c. 1767–71 as being of Pimlico, so Richard may be the builder of St. Mary, Battersea, 1775–7, designed by Joseph Dixon. He was surveyor for the Westminster New Lying-in Hospital, 1765, and became bankrupt in 1778.
Dixon, Samuel (fl. 1789–c. 1823). Carpenter, apprenticed 1772, admitted to scot and lot 1789, died before 1835. By 1794 had large building business; 1801 valued premises in Water Street; 1822–3 did carpenters' work at Snowden's Hospital (52).
Exton, John (c. 1695–1785). Glazier and plumber, apprenticed 1711, freeman 1718, retired 1773 in favour of his journeyman George Bacon. Removed glass from St. George's church, and 1758–62 worked for Lord Exeter at Burghley and St. Martin's church.
Fearn, George (fl. 1843–61). Monumental mason, born in Derbyshire, began business in High Street, Stamford c. 1843; by 1856 had moved workshop to Scotgate. Sold business in 1861 and is said to have died in Halifax in 1877. Monuments survive in All Saints', 1845, St. Michael's, 1849, St. Martin's, 1850.
Gilbert, Henry (fl. 1827–45). Monumental mason, son of John; by 1827 working in his father's former premises in Broad Street, and had recently copied Roubiliac's bust of Newton at Trinity College, Cambridge. In 1845 carved lions in Ketton stone for a bridge at Burghley.
Gilbert, John (c. 1773–1839). Monumental mason, born at Deeping St. James where a James and William Gilbert were working in the late 18th century. John was journeyman to George Sparrow before 1807, when he set up on his own in Broad Street. He was admitted to scot and lot in 1813 and moved to Cambridge c. 1825 (RCHM, Cambridge City; Cambs. I and II). By 1822 he had an agent in Spalding (Mercury, 16 Aug.).
Goodwin, Robert. Mason, admitted to scot and lot 1792 after an apprenticeship to John Hames; in 1788 he helped to repair St. Mary's spire. He did work for the Town in 1796–1819, and signed a monument in St. John's in 1796.
Gregory, William (c. 1772–1852). Builder, admitted to scot and lot 1827. Member of Improvement Committee 1845. He and Francis hard to distinguish. William sold 47–52 St. Leonard's Street (325) in 1835, and one of them, with Tinkler, built Grant's iron foundry (451) in 1845.
Hames, John, junior (d. 1828). Mason. His father John had in 1743 been apprenticed to Richard Bunch (1672–1753) and died in 1782. John the son built 34–36 St. Mary's Street (366) in 1786, repaired St. Mary's spire under Christopher Staveley in 1787, built 39–40 Broad Street (147) in c. 1786, 11–12 St. Mary's Hill (337) in 1790, 4 St. Mary's Place (342) and the S. range of the George Hotel (239) in 1791, and a stable at 36 St. Mary's Street (366) in 1790. No. 16 All Saints' Place (74) may also be by him. In 1786 he inherited five houses, probably 70–73 Scotgate and 14–15 All Saints' Place (432), from William Clarke and in 1790 took over Clarke's old limekiln in St. Martin's. He is not known to have done any building after his bankruptcy in 1794; he valued stone in Bellaer's yard in 1801 and surveyed houses built by John Boyfield in 1815. Of signed monuments, the floor slab in All Saints' is by father or son; the son repaired Truesdale's monument in All Saints' in 1786, and made a tablet in St. John's in 1789.
Hames, Robert (fl. 1784–1810). Mason, probably brother of John, junior, with whom he worked at Burghley in 1788–99. Before 1796 he had a quarry in St. Martin's at TF 036069. In 1784 he refronted 33 St. Mary's Street (365), in 1792 he rebuilt Tickencote church under direction of S. P. Cockerell, in 1794 and 1797 repaired Great Casterton church, in 1797 built 14 St. John's Street (313), and in 1810 built new walls round St. Michael's churchyard. He demolished St. George's Gate in 1805 and opened a quarry at Ketton in 1807. In 1788 he set up, for £40, the monument to Elizabeth Cecil, relict of William, 2nd Earl of Exeter, in Tinwell church after its removal from Clerkenwell.
Harrison, William (probably 1760–1845). Mason, apprenticed to John Cole 1790, freeman 1797. In 1808 rebuilt porch at Browne's Hospital under John Walters, architect, and carried out maintenance work from 1800 onwards. He is known mainly as a monumental mason, his first signed work being of 1798 at Uffington; other tablets of 1808 and 1810 are in St. Martin's, of 1812 in St. Mary's, and two illegible floor slabs in All Saints'.
Kidson, Henry I, II, III. Carpenters. Henry Kidson I bought 54 St. Leonard's Street in 1702 and his son Henry Kidson II (1695–1760) became freeman in 1718, doing work for the Town between then and 1743. His son Henry worked at Truesdale's Hospital between 1768–73.
Legg, William Daniel (d. 1806). Architect. Legg set up in business in Stamford c. 1778. By 1788 he had completed Vale House (250), in 1797 was concerned with an unexecuted municipal project for housing the poor of Stamford, and in 1799 began the new Lodges to Burghley Park. In 1804 he designed the new Shambles (61). He employed masons and provided stone. In 1790, 1793 and 1799 he was paid as architect by the Earls of Exeter; the extent of his responsibility for the 9th and 10th Earls' buildings in Stamford is uncertain. He cannot be proved to be the carpenter of Coleman Street, London, in 1774, and designer of stables at Panton Hall, Lincs., in 1777, but he certainly made alterations at Casewick Hall, Lincs., in 1785.
Lindsey, William (d. 1763). Carpenter, son of Thomas, carpenter; apprenticed to Benjamin Tipping, cabinet maker, 1725; admitted to scot and lot 1733. William lived at 1 St. George Square (291), which he must have fitted up. In 1748 he sold a house, possibly 22 St. Mary's Street (357), to Leonard Stevenson; in 1759 with his son John (admitted to scot and lot in 1750) and Robert Pilkington he built a gallery in St. George's church. His daughter Mary married William Clarke, mason (q.v.).
Lumby, Thomas. Surveyor, presumably of Lincoln. He surveyed and valued for Lord Exeter between 1780 and 1794, staying at the Crown when he visited Stamford. He specifically worked in St. Mary's Hill in 1780–1 and St. Mary's Street in 1784; his visits in 1780–1, 1784, 1789–94, correspond with the building activities in Stamford of the 9th Earl of Exeter, and he may have been employed primarily as a surveyor. In 1780 he was working at Burghley.
Manton, Thomas (d. 1789). Mason, freeman 1769. He did much work for Lord Exeter at Burghley, 1775–84, and in Stamford. He built new houses in 1777 and 1778; 14–16 St. Mary's Hill (339) in 1780, and stables at 34–36 St. Mary's Street (366) in 1785. Between 1784 and 1789 he was working at the George Hotel (239) on the stables and other work, including the N. range, in 1787. He carved a tombstone at Great Casterton, 1782.
Norris, Toby (d. 1626). Bellfounder, freeman 1607. He cast a bell for St. John's church in 1605 (now gone), two for St. Mary's church in 1625 and a third in 1626. He lived at 12 St. Paul's Street (375), which he bought as sitting tenant in 1617. His bell-metal monument is in St. George's church.
He had two sons Toby II, freeman 1628; and Thomas, freeman 1625, to whom the house and business passed, who may have cast a bell for St. Mary's in 1638, and who resigned from the Town Council in 1678. Thomas' son Toby III (1634–99) also lived and worked at 12 St. Paul's Street until 1689.
Peal, Moses (c. 1786–1855). Builder, born at Northborough; admitted to scot and lot 1813 as a carpenter. In 1838 repaired nave roof of St. Mary's church; 1841 constructed an internal vestry and made several pews at St. Mary's and built the Stamford Institution (59); 1842 with R. Tinkler made alterations to the gaol (demolished); 1847 built a fever-ward at the workhouse, and in 1848 built 1 High Street and 4–5 Red Lion Square (279). His small houses include 1–8 Adelaide Street (114), c. 1840–1, eight houses in Ryhall Road (289, 290), before 1838, and 4 St. Leonard's Street (317), 1845.
Pearson, John (d. 1808?). Mason, son of Thomas. Quarried at Wothorpe for Lord Exeter from 1777 onwards. He built houses in 1777 and 1782 and 11–12 St. Mary's Hill (337) in 1791. He rebuilt part of 15 St. Mary's Street (351) in 1775, and following enclosure of St. Martin's was in charge of building the new wall round Burghley Park in 1798.
Pearson, William (1737–1806). Mason, freeman 1762; to be distinguished from a second William (c. 1758–1835). He did small jobs for the Town between 1765 and 1788; in 1767 dismantled part of Scotgate Gate. In 1795 he built 27 St. Mary's Street (361) and worked on 23a High Street St. Martins (213) in 1794.
Pierce, Thomas. Architect. In 1819 he redesigned the roof and probably the entrance hall of the Town Hall (57). He designed a new gaol behind the Town Hall in 1821 and Snowden's Hospital in 1822, and in 1825 he and James Richardson gave an estimate of £260 for repairs to the school (54).
Pilkington, George (d. 1785). Carpenter, son of Thomas. Admitted to scot and lot 1764. He worked at Burghley for Lord Exeter, in 1778 he built a house in St. Martin's, and in 1775 demolished and rebuilt part of 15 St. Mary's Hill (339). After his death the family business was continued by his widow Alice until at least 1795, she doing work at Burghley, the George Hotel (239) in 1788 and 37–39 St. Mary's Street (367) in 1793.
Pilkington, Robert, senior (fl. 1714–36). Carpenter. His father, also Robert, worked for the Town 1709–22 and did maintenance work at Browne's Hospital; he died in 1723. The younger Robert became freeman in 1714 and worked for the Town between 1727 and 1736. In 1725–6 he worked at the George Hotel (239) making the S. stair in 1726.
Pilkington, Robert, junior (fl. 1752–91). Carpenter, son of Thomas, admitted to scot and lot 1752. He worked for Lord Exeter and also the Town 1757–91. In 1759 he made a gallery at St. George's with John and William Lindsey; in 1772 he estimated with William Clarke and John Burton, slater, for work at the Bull Inn (352); he was working at 14–16 St. Mary's Hill (339) in 1780 and the George Hotel (239) in 1786. In 1771 he leased a yard in Scotgate.
Pilkington, Thomas. The first Thomas, carpenter, was apprenticed to his father Robert in 1718, became free in 1724; he worked for Lord Exeter 1758–61, and in 1751 helped rebuild the Shambles in High Street. A second Thomas, carpenter (c. 1732–1809), did work at the extension to the Assembly Rooms (58), at 27 St. Mary's Street (361), and 14 St. John's Street (313) in 1795. The third Thomas, carpenter, freeman 1797, was calling himself architect and builder in 1822, retired in 1829 and died 1830. He built 1–4 Blackfriars Street (124) and 10–12 St. George's Square (295), both designed by him or his son.
Pilkington, Thomas. Architect, son of Thomas Pilkington III, carpenter. He 'received instruction under an eminent carpenter and builder in London' and entered partnership with his father in 1822, being admitted to scot and lot in 1830. In 1832 he demolished the tower of St. Michael's church and submitted an unsuccessful design for the new building, and in 1836 he built the Union Workhouse with Richardson. He moved to Bourne before going to Edinburgh in 1854, returning to Bourne in 1874.
Portwood, George, senior (d. 1742). Mason, probably took Robert Skynnar as apprentice in 1707. In 1710 he was working in St. Michael's church, in 1713 was repairing Browne's Hospital, in 1723 dismantled steeple of Pickworth church, Rutland, in 1724 refronted the George Hotel (239) and in 1726 built a cockpit there. In 1725–6 he did the surveying work for Lord Exeter, in 1730 was involved in the choice of site for a new gaol, for which he built a 'necessary' in 1733, and in 1737 designed the steeple of Withamon-the-Hill church, Lincs. (built by another mason). The unexecuted design for 9 Barn Hill (Fig. 181) was drawn in 1741; in 1742 he was engaged in a large project at Browne's Hospital, which was taken over at his death by Benjamin Stanmore.
Portwood, George, junior (d. 1761). Mason, son of George, senior. In 1720s working as journeyman for father; in 1737 became freeman and set up independent business. He did lesser work for Lord Exeter, and for Truesdale's and Browne's Hospitals. He died in 1761 (All Saints' parish register). His brother Samuel worked for their father and died in Browne's Hospital.
Richardson, James (c. 1782–1860). Builder and carpenter, admitted to scot and lot 1808. Became Borough Surveyor 1825; lived at 16 Barn Hill (103) as had his father Bartholomew. In 1845 took sons Charles and Samuel into the business. He worked on the Town Hall improvements of 1819; repaired the School (54) in 1825 with Thomas Pierce, and made further alterations to the Town Hall in 1839. In 1832–3 he built Truesdale's Hospital (53), followed by an extension in 1844. In 1843–4 with R. Tinkler he altered Barn Hill House (96), and in 1847 repaired Bourn Court (73). Small houses built by him include 11–12 Bath Row (108) of 1834 and 16–19 Adelaide Street (116) of c. 1840–1. In 1820 he took an auctioneer's licence, and this branch of the business remained in Barn Hill until 1971.
Smith, Thomas (fl. 1828–42). Mason, admitted to scot and lot 1832, and lived at 19 St. George's Square until he sold his stock and left Stamford in 1842. In 1828–32 he built a house in St. Martin's and worked at Burghley under Gandy; in 1836 he was clerk of works at the Union Workhouse; in 1841 he repaired St. Mary's Church and tendered for the Stamford Institution. He submitted an unsuccessful design for St. Michael's church in 1834. As a monumental mason his work was prolific, in the plain Grecian style of the day: 13 wall-monuments survive in Stamford, and a gravestone of 1833 at Tickencote.
Sparrow, George (fl. 1788–1805). Mason, freeman 1792 as a housepainter but by 1793 was working as a marble mason; in 1806 he moved to W. D. Legg's former house in Broad Street. He was a member of the Sparrow family of monumental masons and may have come from Grantham.
Staveley, Christopher (c. 1727–1801). Architect, of Melton Mowbray. In 1787 he repaired the tower and spire of St. Mary's church, and in 1794 drew plans of sluices for an improvement in the Welland navigation. John Boyfield II was his foreman before 1779.
Tatam, Henry (fl. c. 1772–1804). Cabinet maker, worked with Cobb in London before starting business in Stamford; freeman 1772. Made furniture for Burghley House. Acting as representative of the Wansford Road Trustees he 'explained' the plan of the proposed Town Hall to the Council in 1775, signed the building proposals, and in 1780 designed an embattled folly to replace Scotgate gate. In 1777 he planned and estimated for new sheep pens with John Dixon, and in 1804 unsuccessfully submitted a plan for the new shambles. He was almost certainly responsible for the design of 9 Barn Hill (97), c. 1796–1801.
Tinkler, Robert (1797–1868). Mason and builder, born at Woolsthorpe, Lincs. Among his works are repairs to St. Mary's spire in 1842, alterations to Barn Hill House (96), 1843–4, various stations for the Midland Railway, c. 1847, and the W. porch of St. George's church in 1848.
Wing, John (fl. c. 1674–1714). Surveyor, of Pickworth, Rutland. In 1714 a Mr. Wing was paid 10s. for 'measuring joiners work' at Browne's Hospital. This was probably the campaign of work costing over £150, George Portwood being paid £50. In 1700 he published a revised version of his uncle Vincent Wing's work Geodaetes Practicus Redivivus, in which he advertised himself as a land and quantity surveyor and architect.
Woolston, Robert (d. 1856). Builder, admitted to scot and lot 1825 as bricklayer. In 1847 began building Town Bridge (64), became bankrupt 1848 but continued in business, tendering for the Infirmary Lodge (45) in 1849. He was a brickmaker, and a monument signed by him in 1829 is in All Saints' church. Contractor with Charles Collins for St. Michael's church, 1835–6. In 1844 he made pews in St. George's church with Collins, and in 1847–8 was building lodges for the Midland Railway.