Thomas White: Redesigning the northern British landscape [Paperback]

Deborah Turnbull(Author); Louise Wickham(Author)

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ISBN: 9781914427008 | Published by: Windgather Press | Year of Publication: 2022 | 288p, H9.7 x W7.3, B/w and color
Status: Not Yet Published - Available for pre-order

Thomas White


This volume aims to restore the reputation of Thomas White, who in his time was as well respected as his fellow landscape designers Lancelot 'Capability' Brown and Humphry Repton. By the end of his career, he had produced designs for at least 32 sites across northern England and over 60 in Scotland. These include nationally important designed landscapes in Yorkshire such as Harewood House, Sledmere Hall, Burton Constable Hall, Newby Hall, Mulgrave Castle as well as Raby Castle in Durham, Belle Isle in Cumbria, and Brocklesby Hall in Lincolnshire. He has a vital role in the story of how northern English designed landscapes evolved in the 18th century.

The book focuses on White's known commissions in England and sheds further light on the work of other designers such as Brown and Repton, who worked on many of the same sites. White set up as an independent designer in 1765, having worked for Brown from 1759, and his style developed over the next thirty years. Never merely a 'follower of Brown', as he is often erroneously described, his designs for plantations in particular were much admired and influenced the later, more informal styles of the picturesque movement.

The improvement plans he produced for his clients demonstrate his surveying and artistic skills. These plans were working documents but at the same time works of art in their own right. Over 60 of his beautifully-executed colored plans survive, which is a testament to the value his clients placed on them. This book makes available for the first time over 90% of the known plans and surveys by White for England. Also included are plans by White's contemporaries, together with later maps, estate surveys, and contemporary illustrations to understand which parts of improvement plans were implemented.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction – White in context

2. Early career – Working with Brown

3. First commissions - 1765-8

4. Established landscape designer - 1769-80

5. Later career - 1781-1802

6. Getting the commission

7. His designs

8. Working methods

9. Arboricultural activities

10. White’s work in Scotland

11. White’s English commissions

1 Armley

2 Belle Isle

3 Blyborough

4 Brocklesby

5 Burton Constable

6 Busby

7 Campsall

8 Carlton

9 Colwick

10 Copgrove

11 Fryston

12 Goldsborough

13 Grimston Garth

14 Grove

15 Harewood

16 Hawksworth

17 Holme

18 Houghton

19 Kirkleatham

20 Lumley

21 Mulgrave

22 Newby

23 Norton

24 Owston

25 Raby

26 Scarisbrick

27 Sedbury

28 Skelton Castle

29 Sledmere

30 Stapleton

31 Welton

32 Workington

33 Other possible – Birdsall [Willoughby], Kilnwick, [Vavasour, 3 possible candidates– Melbourne, Hazelwood or Weston], Glentworth, Gosforth

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