Decision time for key building in farming history

posted 29 Mar 2011, 14:59 by Paul Brayford
From the Yorkshire Post 28 Mar 2011

The fate of a historic hall in East Yorkshire hangs in the balance after decades of deadlock.

The owners of a crumbling, historic manor house have broken their silence to explain their plans for Elmswell Old Hall.

It dates back to around 1635 and is part of the historically significant Elmswell country estate near Driffield.

The hall was last lived in by tenant farmers who moved out in 1965. Since then its condition steadily deteriorated and for years it has been the subject of planning and legal battles.

East Riding of Yorkshire Council served an “urgent works notice” on its owners in 1998 in an attempt to prevent further ruin.

That same year, English Heritage upped the Old Hall’s status from Grade II to Grade II* listed – meaning it is officially “of more than special interest”.

Only just over five per cent of the nation’s listed buildings fall into this category. More recently, an attempt by the council to obtain a compusory purchase order failed.

Of particular note are the house’s links with a 17th century agricultural diarist, Henry Best, and the fact that it was one of the first brick buildings in East Yorkshire

(c) 2011 Yorkshire Post