Scenes of Newcastle upon Tyne
The Bessie Surtees House is found as 41 as 44 Sandhill (once known as Surtees House and Milbank House), in the Sandhill area of Newcastle. It is a very handsome five-storeyed 17th century house and five bays wide. Bessie Surtees House is composed of two five-storey 16th and 17th century merchants' houses (now English Heritage's regional office) and both are fine examples of Jacobean domestic architecture, with some splendid period interiors (see pictures below). The Bessie Surtees house is notorious as the 1772 scene of the elopement of Bessie Surtees with John Scott (son of a coal merchant), who would later become Lord Chancellor of England.
The plaque below the window through Bessie Surtees eloped!
The left-hand part of the building is the Bessie Surtees House, demarked by the six short brown columns on each upper floor. Next door, No 37 is similar to Bessie Surtees House, but of three bays only. The whole block presents a most attractive picture of early buildings, an all to rare a sight in Newcastle. The earliest reference to a house on the site of Surtees House is 1465.
Bessie Surtees House is a typical 17th-century structure with four overhanging storeys above the ground floor and retains its original facade.
The rooms in Bessie Surtees House feature plasterwork decorated with classical details and the interior of the principal room on the first floor (shown above), has some fine carved oak panelling, very elaborate plaster ceilings (see below) and carved fire surrounds.
The principal first-floor room at Bessie Surtees House with the finely carved fire surround.
The main room on the first floor in the Bessie Surtees House.
One of the wonderful highly decorated plaster ceilings of Bessie Surtees House.
More detail of the plasterwork ceiling in the Bessie Surtees House.
The fine carvings of the oak fire surround in the Bessie Surtees House.
The carved banister rails of the stairs to the upper floors of Bessie Surtees house.
A Tudor fire place in the Bessie Surtees House.
Another Tudor/Jacobean? fireplace
The oak panelling of another room in the Bessie Surtees House.
A fine carved 17th century fireback in Bessie Surtees House, it depicts the Annunciation.
The exterior of Bessie Surtees House, viewed from the inner courtyard.
Details of the timber framed brickwork of the walls of the courtyard of Bessie Surtees House.
Further along from the Bessie Surtees House to its right are some other houses of similar age. the QUILTED CAMEL (36 Sandhill, a chic bar I gather!) is brick fronted with stone lintels, then another 17th century house, similar to the Bessie Surtees House (No 33 Sandhill), and in very slim outline , the front of the RED HOUSE. This is an amazing architectural survival from Newcastle's rich history.
No 33 Sandhill is also similar to the Bessie Surtees House (left here, but to the right of Bessie Surtees House) and to the right of No 33 is the RED HOUSE (No 32 Sandhill) which is brick faced with stone lintels
Battery Stairs is medieval stone stairway leading down from the Sandhill area to Newcastle Quayside.
Going under the railway bridge back up into the city centre from the Sandhill area.
NEWCASTLE-GATESHEAD area picture index: webpage & (section) 1. Newcastle-upon-Tyne-Gateshead area (1) River Tyne and Bridges * 2. Newcastle-Gateshead area (2) Sage Theatre & Concert Hall & Baltic Arts Centre Gateshead * 14a. Newcastle area (3) Some buildings in the centre of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne * 15. Newcastle area(4) Some 'artwork' and the Laing Art Gallery * 23. Newcastle area (5) The Angel of the North * 37. Newcastle area (6) The Black gate and Castle Keep * 38. Newcastle area (7) The Cathedral * 39. Newcastle (8) Hancock Museum of the North * 40. Newcastle (9) Bessie Surtees House * 41. Newcastle-Gateshead (10) More Churches, Medieval Walls, Gateshead Tourist Information Centre * 52. Newcastle (11) The Discovery Museum - History of Tyneside * 53. Newcastle (12) St Mary's Roman Catholic Cathedral and All Saints Church * 14b Newcastle (13) The Central Arcade and Holy Jesus Hospital SEE ALSO NE page 31a Jarrow (1) Bede's World * 31b Jarrow (2) St Peter's Church, Monastery * 35a. Tynemouth (1) Town and Castle * 35b. Tynemouth (2) The Priory * 36. Belsay Hall and Belsay Castle
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