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History of Aston Hall II

There is not much of the original furniture either of the Holte family or of the Watt family left. Most of the furniture and other objects have been provided by the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery on the basis of information gathered from various sources especially from inventories and illustrations. Some of the original Holte portraits are now on display including two attributed to Cornelius Johnson in the Gallery, and a Romney and a Gainsborough (in the Great Dining Room situated on the first floor.

The most elaborately decorated rooms are to be found in the south and west ranges with the decorative elements in the woodwork, chimneys and the plasterwork of the ceilings.

The central entrance leads into the main Hall which contains an early 18th century portrait of Sir Thomas Holte and early 17th century wooden chairs. A stone archway leads to the parlour and to the oak staircase. In the parlour there is a tapestry on display dating back to the last decade of the sixteenth century and made in Sheldon, now part of Birmingham and the sturdy and elaborately carved oak staircase still bears the marks of the damage caused during the Civil War.

The staircase leads up to the south-facing dining room of interest for its plaster frieze of the Nine Worthies and to the enormous Gallery where there are early 17th century French tapestries and busts that belonged to the Watt family and representing various English figures. The Gallery occupies the whole of the garden front and the first floor rooms contain furnishings of the 18th and 19th centuries reflecting the period when these rooms were altered.


View of Aston Hall, Birmingham from the rear garden
View of Aston Hall, Birmingham from the rear garden


On the second floor the rooms were used as servant's bedrooms. On this floor there is a garret with a display of Civil War armour and another room contains a replica of a Victorian housekeeper's room.

From this floor another descending staircase leads to the servants' quarters appropriately containing objects and cooking utensils.

The rooms on the ground floor on the garden front were transformed into living rooms in the 18th and 19th centuries. There are now contemporary pictures on display and 19th century furniture. The furniture includes work from George Bullock and Richard Bridgens, cabinet makers of the 19th century who had worked for the Watts and Boulton families.




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latest update 9/04/04