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HITCHIN PRIORY

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17th or 18th century country house, incorporating remains of the 14th century Carmelite Priory of St Mary. The house remained in the hands of the Radcliffe family until the 20th century when it was converted into a conference centre. The priory was founded in 1317 and suppressed in 1538. The church was located to the South with the claustral complex to the North. Ths present South range, rebuilt in 1775 in Adams Style, stands on the site of the church. The North range incorporates the North range of the cloister with evidence of the cloister North walk and the frater, and the West range also includes Mediaeval material dating architecturally to the 15th century. Watching briefs and evaluations have not found any additional evidence of the Priory.

The facade of the southern face of the house is an elaborate late 18th century Palladian design. The north elevation dates to the 17th century and includes a depiction of the Radcliffe coat of arms and is dated to 1679. To the west is a small 18th century ornamental garden bridge over the River Hiz. There was also an icehouse built in the 1770s.

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