17 May 2014

From The Mansion Archive…

The Mansion Hotel

The prices might have gone up a little since then, but Dine still strive to offer “our best attention and service at all times!”

Today on the blog, we’re taking a trip back in time through The Mansion’s prestigious and varied history.

Joel Skingle Photography

Commissioned in 1811 by the then owner of Roundhay Park, Thomas Nicholson The Mansion was built in the Greek revival style at great cost’ as ‘the accommodation of a family of distinction’.*

The building and park were acquired for the people of Leeds in 1871 by Mayor John Baron, a purchase that was initially dismissed by political rivals as a ‘white elephant’ since at the time the park was located outside the city and inaccessible to much of the local population. However, following the arrival of a tram link crowds were soon flocking to enjoy the open spaces of Roundhay Park and this public investment was vindicated as an enlightened model of urban recreational planning.

The Mansion meanwhile established local renown as a café and party venue serving as a centrepiece for public and private celebrations, eventually earning tributes from visiting celebrities and royalty alike.

Joel Skingle Photography

The venue was managed for over 100 years by the Gilpin family, the most famous of whom was Craven Gilpin. He built The Mansion into one of the best city venues in the country and his reputation was such that King George V requested to meet him after a royal banquet at Leeds Town Hall in 1933 .

After the Gilpin family relinquished their tenancy in 2003, The Mansion was closed and its future remained uncertain until 2008 when Leeds City Council awarded a new tenancy to Dine.

Joel Skingle Photography

Following extensive restoration and refurbishment, The Mansion restaurant-café reopened in 2009, followed by the principle function spaces. The Mansion hosted its first wedding reception on September 5th 2009.

*Burt. S ‘Roundhay Park – An illustrated history’

Photographs by Joel Skingle Photography 

To find out more about holding your wedding or special event at our fabulous venue, contact us or visit The Mansion page on our website.