Tyne and Wear HER(6615): Newcastle, The Close, Mansion House - Details
Newcastle, The Close, Mansion House
Built in 1691. Brick turretted building with sash windows. The Mansion House was the official residence of the Mayor during his year of office, both to ensure that he was resident, and that as "chief magistrate" he was always available. It was also used for the entertainment of the judges of assize, and for civic entertainment, elaborate 18th century dinners and balls. It is possible that only London also maintained a mansion house of this type. In July 1834 there was a Council committee to investigate the affairs of the mansion house, to consider whether it should be discontinued. By December of the same year, the committee decided that whilst the expenses of the Mansion House were extremely heavy and warranted stronger control, it was not thought that the Mansion House should be discontinued altogether. However it was abandoned in 1835. The Mansion Houses wines were sold in September 1836 for £800. The furniture was sold in January 1837 for £2000. Plated goods, including inkstands, toast racks, candlesticks, snuffer trays, taper stands and tea urns were auctioned on 5 January 1837. Gold and silver plate (bottle lables, knives, forks, spoons, snuff boxes, tankards, tea and coffee pots, fish slices and wine strainers) were auctioned on 6 January 1837. The 10th day of the auction was for silver-topped footman's canes. The building was used as a warehouse. The Mansion House burnt down in 1895. The painted panels in the small room next to the Mayor's Parlour in the Guildhall, which depict old buildings of Newcastle, are said to have come from the Mansion House.
I. Ayris, 1997, A City of Palaces; unreferenced papers in TWAS; Interim excavation report on the excavations of the Mansion House site, Newcastle City Archaeology Unit, 1990; W. Collard and M. Ross, 1842, Architectural and Picturesque Views in Newcastle upon Tyne, p 24