Beaumanor Hall & the Herrick Family
by Fiona Reed
Beaumanor first came into the possession of the Herrick family in 1595 when it was bought by William Heyricke. William was a wealthy London goldsmith who became Court Jeweller to King James I, and in 1605 became Master of the Goldsmiths and received a knighthood. There were five further generations of William Herricks before William Herrick VI died without a male heir in 1832. The Beaumanor estate passed to his nephew, William Herrick VII, who moved to Beaumanor with his motherand sisters, Mary Ann and Lucy
The windows in St George’s Chapel are dedicated to the Herrick family,
including this one to Mary Ann
William quickly became known for his good deeds in the local area and was a leading voice in calling for the building of St Paul’s and Copt Oak churches, both consecrated in 1837. He contributed towards the cost of the St Paul’s, along with a number of other gentlemen from the neighbourhood. In 1842, work began on the rebuilding of Beaumanor Hall, with William employing William Railton, architect of St Paul’s, to redesign it. The new hall was finished in 1848.
William married Sophia Christie in 1862 and the couple supported the building of two churches in Leicester and also built schools adjoining St Paul’s, as well as the vicarage. Mary Ann also built an almshouse in Woodhouse and raised funds for a new schoolhouse at Woodhouse Eaves.
A notice announcing William and Sophia's wedding in The Gentleman's Magazine