Goddards House and Garden is an Arts and Crafts house in Dringhouses, York, England. It was built in 1927 for Noel and Kathleen Terry of the famed chocolate-manufacturing family Terry's with the house designed by local architect Walter Brierley and the garden by George Dillistone. The National Trust acquired the property in 1984 to use as regional offices and the garden and parts of the house are open to visitors with displays telling the story of the family and their confectionery business. The house is a Grade I listed building and the carriage entrance to the property is Grade II* listed.
** – The Terry Family – **
Noel Terry (1889–1980) was the great-grandson of Joseph Terry, the first Terry of the family confectionery business. Noel was brought up at Trentholme, the home of his maternal grandfather, located 0.8 miles (1.3 km) north of Goddards, and opposite the Elmbank Hotel which, at the time, was the home of Sidney Leetham, an uncle of Kathleen Leetham (1892–1980). The Leetham family were owners of a large flour-milling business in the Hungate area of York. Kathleen lived at Aldersyde, a large house that her father Henry Ernest Leetham commissioned in 1895 and which is located 0.5 miles (0.8 km) south of Goddards.
Noel and Kathleen married in 1915 having overcome the objections of her father who had initially opposed their relationship. Soon after the marriage Noel was sent to France due to the First World War and in 1916 was wounded at the Battle of the Somme whilst serving with the 5th West Yorkshire Regiment.
After he returned home they started a family together and by 1925 had two sons, Peter and Kenneth, a daughter, Betty, and plans to move to a larger house. From 1927 Goddards would become the family home of the Terry's and their children - with their youngest son Richard being born the following year. The name of the house came from Noel Terry's middle name, which was that of his grandmother, Frances Goddard, first wife of Sir Joseph Terry.
By the 1930s Noel had become a managing director at Terry’s and it was at this time that the company introduced two of their most famous products – Terry's All Gold and the Chocolate Orange. When production was interrupted by the Second World War Noel became a Controller with the Royal Observer Corps and was awarded an MBE in 1943. His son Kenneth served in the RAF and was awarded the DFC. He died in 1944 and is commemorated on the local war memorial (also by Brierley). Noel continued to work at Terry's until 1970, and his son Peter, who had joined Terry's in 1945, became deputy managing director.
Although the house was built in the Arts and Crafts style it would become furnished with a large assortment of Georgian furniture and clocks which Noel Terry collected throughout his life. It is thought that his enthusiasm in antiques was partly inspired by his father-in-law who had been a collector of porcelain and jade. His interest in history also led to his involvement with York Civic Trust, of which he was honorary treasurer for many years. After Noel and Kathleen died in 1980 Noel’s collection was put on display at Fairfax House, in York, a Georgian house museum renovated by the Civic Trust.
Kathleen's sister Constance Leetham Terry was one of the first women to be admitted to The Physiological Society in 1915. She was married to Noel's brother J. E. Harold Terry, a novelist and playwright. Noel's sister Kathleen Betsy married Air Marshal Jack Baldwin.
** – The House – **
Goddards was the last major project of Walter Brierley who died in 1926 whilst the house was still under construction. His own home (the Grade 2* listed Bishopsbarns) in St George's Place, York, was in the same street that Noel and Kathleen Terry lived in and 0.6 miles (1 km) from Goddards.
One of the notable architectural features of the house is the vaulted ceiling in the drawing room which is similar to Brierley’s own home with the plasterwork in both houses attributed to George Bankart, probably George P Bankart in both cases, rather than his son George E Bankart, with whom he wrote books about the craft. The National Heritage List for England describes Goddards as “the finest surviving example of the work of Walter Brierley, the Lutyens of the north”, and it still retains many of the original fixtures including its Arts and Crafts wallpapers and panelling and the staircase with its oak carving.
The exterior of the house features handmade locally produced bricks arranged in geometric patterns and decorative chimney stacks typical of a Brierley building. Goddards was built by William Anelay whose initial estimate for the project, including the carriage entrance, was £25,980, however the work suffered a number of delays and was not finished until after the family had moved into the house. Copies of the original plans are displayed in the house.
** – The Gardens – **
In 1925 George Dillistone, a landscape architect from Tunbridge Wells who worked with Lutyens at Castle Drogo, was hired to design the garden at Goddards. The design evolved over a number of years and plans were still being developed as late as 1935, by which time Dillistone had become vice-president of the Institute of Landscape Architects. In-keeping with the style of the house the four acre garden at Goddards was divided into several distinct areas, including a terrace and a series of rooms separated by shrubs, hedges and a herbaceous border; all of these elements illustrate the Arts and Crafts nature of the garden.
The enclosures included a tennis court (restored in 2016) and a bowling green used as a croquet lawn. The centrepiece of the garden is a cruciform lily pool which is fed from a semi-circular reflecting pool and was originally surrounded by a rose garden.
Beyond this area the garden slopes downwards to York Racecourse, (Knavesmire) across which it was possible to walk to where, in 1926, Terry's had built their factory, with its distinctive clock tower visible from the garden. Typical of this style of garden the landscaping becomes less formal further from the house with paths leading down through a rock garden at the far end of the garden.
The wildlife in the garden included a colony of midwife toads, also referred to as bell toads, and it was once home to a number of exotic pets including axolotls and green lizards which were introduced into the garden in the early 1930s. In 2016 the National Trust revealed plans to recreate the original planting schemes drawn up by Dillistone almost ninety years earlier.
Brierley was also the architect for the Grade II* listed gatehouse at the entrance to Goddards, a red brick structure with staircase turrets which incorporates a flat roofed motor house. It was originally the home of the Terry's chauffeur and remains in residential use.
** – Facilities – **
Walking from York train station, turn right over the bridge and right again onto Blossom Street. Follow the road up and over The Mount and keep walking with the York racecourse on your left hand side. Pass the Marriott Hotel on your left and Goddards is two doors away. A good half an hour walk from the train station.
By bus. Take the number 4, 13, 840 or 843 from opposite York train station and alight at the Marriott Hotel. Goddards is two doors away. Buses run roughly every 10 minutes. Please note the Park and Ride buses do not currently stop outside Goddards.
Location : Goddards House, 27 Tadcaster Road, York, North Yorkshire YO24 1GG
Transport: York (National Rail) then bus (see above) or 35 minutes. Bus: see above.
Opening Times: March to October, Wed. to Sunday 10:30 to 17:00
Tickets - Whole Property: Adults £7.40. Children £3.70.
Tel: 01904 771930