of the House
Wheathills was originally built
by the Bennett family between 1763 and 1800 and was then
later purchased by Francis Mundy, Lord of the Manor, on 11th
July 1805, for his retirement home.
Samuel Brown, a Derby Architect,
who also made the working drawing for Derby General Infirmary,
based on William Strutt’s
designs, was paid £1,150 over four years for his
services (a lot of money in those days). We know that Wheathills
was a very grand house with local alabaster stone fireplaces
supplied by Richard Brown of King Street, Derby. The house
also contained hand drawn plaster-work, panelled rooms,
decorative stone, wooden polished floors, decorative metal
work, a library and a small Ballroom with a quartet alcove.
Throughout, the house was decorated
to a very high standard according to surviving documents
that are available. On the death of Sir Francis Mundy,
the house experienced a change of use – becoming a working farmhouse and
over the years many of the interior features were removed.
Sadly, the last alabaster fireplace was sold for over £11,000
at auction prior to our purchase of the house.
Finally, the building was converted into
nine flats about 20 to 30 years ago, which almost destroyed
what was left of the remaining plaster work and panelling.
Fortunately there are fragments of features and hidden
sections of painted panelling all around the property.
Using these clues, together with further investigations
being carried out as restoration progresses, we can
make educated guesses as to what the original property
looked like in Lord Mundy's time.
Our intention is not to slavishly copy Brown's designs,
but to make an honest interpretation of them using timber,
plaster and modern wall coverings in the typical style
of a Regency home of that period.
information on the history of Wheathills.