Framed by imposing stands of nettles and docks in stupendously landscaped grounds conceived and compassed by the notorious Culpability Brown, Tardis Towers is an unsurpassed example of a Grade 1 listing building in the Classical Rustic Tradition of architecture.
The house itself is based on an original design composted by Sir Christopher Robin as an exercise in trompe l'oeil on the back of an old Inland Revenge vanilla envelope and constructed some time later by Sir Klingon Grimly, by stealth, at night, in a hit-and-run erection incident.
On entry, one is struck by the sumptuous inferior in the hyperbolic idiom, set off by a grand staircase of Cascara marble, rising in a stately upwards sweep towards the skilfully embossed ceiling decorations depicting the bounty of Mother Nature. A motif of bindweed and ground elder artistically interwoven with dandelions and groundsel in a classical frieze of gilded gesso surrounds a cornucopia of garden vegetables and undermines the rural setting of the house. This design, and the grand walk-in marble fireplace at the end of the Great Hall was ably executed by the great architect Robert, a scion of the well-known Addams family.¹
Access to the East and West wings is to be found at the end of the Great Hall beneath the minstrels' gallery, and the servants' quarters are situated above the East Wing, access to which is provided by a steep, narrow pine staircase, haunted by the shade of a chambermaid who is said to have died of a broken Ming vase.
The Library occupies the ground floor of the West Wing, and its wide French widows lead you on to the York stone terrace, mantled in honour of Richard III (The Rainbow King), and which still bears his motto: Richard Of York Got Blotto In Venice, beneath which the steps lead down to the croquet lawn and bowling-green.
The kitchens and Butler's Pantry take up the greater area of the ground floor and basement in the East Wing, and the unfinished South Aspect originally was intended to include a Roman-style bath complex and a hundred yard indoor (fullbore) rifle range.
¹ This works on the Möbius Loop principle, but you don't notice it, really you don't, even while you are turning inside-out.
Back to Main Page