An introduction to Robert Adam and Kedleston

In partnership with his younger brother James, from their offices in London, Robert Adam quickly became the most fashionable architect of his generation. A stream of the great and the good commissioned Adam’s work which featured a strong simple elegance, in stark contrast to the flashy, over-exuberant fashions of previous designers.

One of Robert Adam’s most prominent and longstanding patrons was Sir Nathaniel Curzon, 5th Baronet (created Lord Scarsdale in 1761). On succeeding his father in 1758, Sir Nathaniel immediately set about rebuilding the family seat at Kedleston, creating Kedleston Hall, as we know it today.

In 1760, Adam built a Coaching Inn, now The Kedleston Country House, to allow the Curzon family to capitalise on the naturally sulphurous local water by establishing a spa. There was already a sulphur spring bath house within the estate, but the Inn was built for the visitors who came to take the water.

During the nineteenth century the Inn was used as a farmhouse, but reverted back to a hotel in 1967. The walled gardens to either side of the house have been added to with additional structures, and Adam’s original boundary wall is punctured with windows along the front of the building.

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