The grandest of all town houses

Fydell House feature pictures.
Fydell House feature pictures.

FYDELL HOUSE, on South Street, is often referred to as the grandest house in Boston. Reporter Daniel Jaines had a guided tour around the building and found out why...

The tour of this interesting old building started with the American room, which has held a number of distinguished guests from the USA and was opened by American Ambassador Joseph Kennedy.

Fydell House feature pictures.

Fydell House feature pictures.

It had the feel of an historic chamber, with its wooden furniture and antique items on display.

The building has had many visitors and contains items which once belonged to important faces to Boston including Sir Joseph Banks, Matthew Flinders and George Bass.

In the garden, which stretches back to John Adams Way, there is an armillary sphere with one of Sir Joseph Banks’ poems inscribed upon it and a stone carving of a white horse.

Originally built for the Jackson Family in the 1700’s, Fydell House passed through one generation before being sold to its namesake Joseph Fydell, a trader and mercer working out of the Guildhall, in 1726.

He left his mark on the house, which still stands above the entrance – it reads 17JF26.

Joseph's nephew Richard bought the house from his brother-in-law and trustee John Browne in 1733, following Joseph’s death in 1731.

Richard and his son Thomas built a reputation in the wine trade and were active in town politics, holding the office of Mayor for six terms between them and being elected members of Parliament for five terms.

Chairman of Fydell House Centre Stewart Edwards said: “Richard and Thomas were remarkable men who dominated Boston’s affairs.

“This was in the days when the river ran to the sea and was when the town was the fourth biggest port.”

The family held the house until 1868.

Nearly 66 years later there were plans to demolish it.

“A. N. Cooke, the vicar of Boston Stump, said we were not having that and formed the Boston Preservation Trust who bought the house and saved it.” added Mr Edwards.

The trust worked to restore the house and open it to the people of Boston and beyond.

The Common Room, originally part of the kitchen is a small, intimate room. It is rumoured there is a passageway somewhere near to the kitchens that originally went to the Guildhall.

The Green Room is the largest venue room available and used to form the drawing room of the house. With huge windows and access to the garden at the end it is certainly the brightest room of the house.

Finally, the library, a lovely quaint room, contains books which are aged more than 100 years old.

The house is now used to host a number of classes and events including weddings, fayres and parties.

For more information visit www.fydellhousecentre.org.uk or call 01205 351520.