Sid’s Sites: Newfield Hall

Posted on October 4, 2011 by


Newfield Hall

Newfield Hall

A mansion known as Newfield Hall was to the left of Newfield Hall Farm, now the site of Gleadless Medical Centre. It was the home Peter Brownell, born 1761.  He died in 1828 aged 66 and was buried in St James Church, Norton.  His wife Marianne, born 1775, died in 1846 aged 71 and was buried in the same churchyard.  They had six children – two sons  and four daughters who are buried in the Brownell family tomb in Heeley Churchyard.

Peter’s father and grandfather were both called Luke, and born at Newfield Hall: grandfather in 1685, and a ‘Robert Brownell of Newfield’ was born in 1634.  Both Luke’s and Robert were scythe-smiths, but Peter was a cutler, becoming Master Cutler in 1807.  Peter’s father, Luke had a sister, Susan Brownell, who married Thomas Ellin of Lees Hall, another mansion that stood at the bottom of the golf course.  Thomas Ellin, too, was a Master Cutler, and also owned ‘Vulcan Dam’ – now the site of Mothercare and Staples, on what was ‘Ellin’ Street, near the Moor.  There is a painting dated 1830 of Vulcan Dam with St Mary’s Church in the background.

Peter and Marianne Brownell of Newfield Hall had four daughters who never married, but were well looked after by a cook, waiting maid, domestic servant, and old William Thompson, groom and coachman.  He died in 1903, aged 83, and the headstone on his grave in Heeley Churchyard reads:

In affectionate remembrance of William Thompson who for 48 years was the faithful friend and servant to the Brownells of Newfield Hall.”

The last owner of Newfield Hall was CA Potter.  His chauffeur was Fred Pemberton, son of Thomas, the landlord of the Newfield Inn on Denmark Road.  ‘Pemberton’ is the name of one of the high-rise blocks built on the site of Newfield Hall after its demolition in 1939: could it have been named after Fred?  You can see two pyramid coping stones saved from Newfield Hall at the back of Newfield bus shelter.