The Chateau

Gate Burton, Lincolnshire - Sleeps 2

About the property

At first glance this looks like a French château, but it is actually a very clever scale model of one sitting on a hill above the River Trent in the middle of the Lincolnshire countryside.

Beds 1 Double

  • Sleeps2
  • 4 nights from from£307
  • equivalent to £38.38 per person per night

A romantic retreat

Built as a Gainsborough lawyer’s weekend retreat, it was later used for picnics and other mild kinds of excursion. Today The Château offers a small glimpse of Georgian life.

The principal room upstairs has a high coved ceiling, an open fire and a balcony overlooking the surrounding parkland, while downstairs the space is cleverly divided utilising its four corners and creating an elegant entrance hall.

The Château stands on a grassy knoll above a big bend of the River Trent on the edge of Gate Burton park. There are fine views across the park and up a shining reach of the River Trent along which big slow barges, piling the water in front of them, press on towards an enormous power station whose cooling towers steam majestically in the distance.

Floor Plans

‘Perhaps the number of engagements and wedding anniversaries celebrated here constitutes a Landmark record?’

From the logbook

Map & local info

The Château stands on a grassy knoll watching over the River Trent, on the edge of Burton Park in Lincolnshire, with fine views across the park and the river.

Nearby Lincoln Castle is a great historical day out, and will be fully open in 2015 after a huge restoration project. Meanwhile, you can still visit and see the process of renovation taking place. 

Wetlands Waterfowl and Exotic Bird Park and North Leverton Windmill are both within driving distance of The Château 

Every year Waddington Air Show puts on a spectacular show; there are dozens of participating aircraft, including a display from the Red Arrows.  

Gravity Fields Festival is also not to be missed; a unique festival which creatively explores the physical sciences through art and performance, and is inspired by Sir Isaac Newton.  

Gainsborough Model Railway is one of the largest hand built model railways, and is located very close to The Château. 

Please see our Pinterest Page for more information on things to see and do suring your stay at The Château. 

The Chateau
Gate Burton, Lincolnshire - Sleeps 2
Clear directions

‘I feel like Beatrix Potter’s mice, living in a very up-market dolls’ house.’

From the logbook

Your questions answered

    What you need to know about this building

  • Does the property allow dogs?

    No.
  • How is the property accessed?

    Via a track.
  • What is the nearest railway station and how far away is it?

    Gainsborough – 4 miles
  • Is there car parking specifically for Landmark guests?

    Yes there are two car parking spaces a short distance from the property. There are steps between the parking area and the property.
  • What type of heating does the property have?

    There are electric night storage heaters and an open fire.
  • How can I get fuel for the open fire or stove?

    Unfortunately, there is currently no arrangement for the purchase and delivery of logs, however details of local sources will be provided with your order confirmation.
  • What are the kitchen facilities?

    The kitchen is fully equipped with all plates, cutlery, fridge etc.
    There is also an electric cooker.
  • What are the bathroom facilities?

    There is one bathroom with a shower.
  • Does this Landmark have steep, narrow or spiral stairs?

    No.
  • Is there a garden or outside space?

    There is a garden (not enclosed).

    Booking and Payment

  • Can I pay a deposit?

    If your stay starts more than three months from the date you make the booking, you are required to pay a deposit of one third of the cost of your stay (or £100 per booking, if greater) at the time of booking. Camping on Lundy must be paid for in full at the time of booking.
  • How can I pay?

    We accept Maestro (if issued in the UK), Visa, MasterCard, direct transfer and sterling cheques drawn on a UK bank. Cheques should be made payable to the Landmark Trust except for Lundy stays and boat/helicopter tickets which should be payable to The Lundy Company Ltd. All payments must be in sterling.
  • How do I pick up the key?

    There are various arrangements for picking up keys. To arrange to get into the Landmark, please contact the housekeeper at least two days before your stay
  • How can I cancel or change my booking?

    If you wish to cancel or change your booking, please contact our Booking Office on 01628 825925
  • What if I arrive late?

    Please let the housekeeper know if you are going to arrive late and s/he will leave a key for you in a suitable place.
  • Do you accept payment in other currencies?

    At the moment we only accept payment in sterling.
  • How far in advance do I need to book?

    It depends. Some of our most popular Landmarks are booked up a long time in advance, but many can be booked at short notice. We will always have Landmarks free for the coming weekend so it’s always worth checking our availability list.
  • Do you have to be a member to book a Landmark?

    No, Landmarks are available to be booked for anyone.
  • Do I need a Handbook to be able to book?

    No, all the information you need can be found on our website, although we’d like you to buy one anyway as it will be a pleasure to own!
  • What happens if I can’t get to the Landmark due to bad weather?

    If the weather is bad, please contact our booking office who will advise you as to whether the Landmark is accessible. If the housekeeper can safely get to the building to carry out the changeover then we consider that it is open and available. However if we cannot undertake a changeover then we will do our utmost to transfer your stay to another Landmark, which may not be of a similar size or in the same part of the country as your original booking.

    Staying at a Landmark

  • Are Landmarks only available as self-catering accommodation?

    Yes, Landmarks are only available as self-catering accommodation. We do not offer bed and breakfast.
  • Do you provide catering?

    Landmark does not provide catering, but we can recommend Greycoat Lumleys who can arrange for expert and well-trained staff to cater for one evening or for your entire holiday. Their cooks and chefs are able to work with you to meet your specific requirements
  • Do you allow dogs?

    You may bring up to two dogs to properties where dogs are allowed (please see specific property details for exemptions however dogs are not permitted on Lundy except assistance dogs). They must be kept off the furniture and under proper control.
  • Can I bring a pet?

    Apart from two dogs (see above) no other pets are permitted.
  • Insured if I break something?

    We do not carry insurance for breakages. However we appreciate that accidents do sometimes happen. If you have a breakage during your stay, please let the housekeeper know and if appropriate we reserve the right to invoice you accordingly.
  • Are Landmarks suitable for children?

    Yes, most of our Landmarks are perfect for children, with gardens to play in and secret places to discover. Our furniture is surprisingly robust and we positively encourage families to stay. However, some of our buildings may not be suitable for small children; for example, some of them have steep or uneven spiral staircases. We recommend that you call the Booking Enquiries team if you would like to find out the suitability of any of our Landmarks for young children.
  • Are Landmarks accessible for people with disabilities or limited mobility?

    Some of our Landmarks are suitable for people with disabilities or limited mobility. However, many Landmarks have steep or narrow staircases, uneven floors and thresholds, changes of level, low ceilings or beams, as well as indistinct colours on steps and in corridors. We recommend that you call Booking Enquiries if you would like to find out the suitability of a particular Landmark for anyone with a specific disability.
  • Can I get married in a Landmark?

    Unfortunately, most of our Landmarks are not licensed for weddings. However, you may get married on Lundy.
  • Can I hold a big party in a Landmark?

    All our larger Landmarks are perfect for gatherings of family or friends. You may invite an additional two guests to visit you during your stay, however they must not stay overnight. This is very important because our fire regulations specifically note the maximum number of people in any one building. In addition our properties are prepared, furnished and equipped for the number of people specified and greater numbers cause damage and excessive wear and tear to vulnerable buildings. Should this condition be ignored we shall make a retrospective charge per person per day (whether or not they stay overnight) for each guest over the permitted limit, the charge being pro-rated on the total cost of your booking.
  • Is it true there are no televisions in the buildings?

    We deliberately do not provide televisions and find that most people appreciate this.
  • Why are your access tracks sometimes difficult?

    One of the challenges of restoring unloved buildings is gaining access to them. We frequently have to negotiate rights with our neighbours and share tracks with them. In many cases tracks do not belong to us and we have no right to maintain them. Wherever possible we work with our neighbours to provide you with a good quality surface, but where this is a problem then you will be warned at the time of booking.
  • Will there be sockets for my electrical appliances?

    Yes, we have standard electricity sockets for UK appliances. If you are coming from outside the UK, you will need to bring your own adaptor plug(s).

    Facilities

  • Are the kitchens and bathrooms restored to a modern standard?

    Sometimes our kitchens and bathrooms have to be imaginatively fitted into the available space in buildings where before there were none, but they are all planned and equipped to a high and modern standard.
  • Is linen provided?

    Yes, Landmarks are fully equipped with sheets and towels. All the beds are fully made up for your arrival.
  • Are the kitchens fully equipped?

    Yes, our kitchens are well equipped with cookers and fridges. There are freezers and dishwashers (in larger buildings) and, where space allows, microwaves as well as a wide and standard range of utensils. A full equipment list is available at time of booking.
  • Do you provide logs for the open fire/stove?

    Logs are provided at many of our Landmarks for an additional cost.
  • Will there be a mobile signal in the Landmark I book?

    Mobile coverage varies. Some Landmarks have an excellent signal, but others have none at all. If you are concerned, you can check with the housekeeper before your arrival.
  • Is there Wi-Fi in your buildings?

    No. At the moment, we have decided not to implement Wi-Fi in our buildings following a consultation with our customers. Many said that they would find it useful, but many also felt that it would somehow damage the experience of staying in a Landmark. As the responses were so split, and as we have so many other initiatives requiring funding, we have decided to put this on hold for the time being.
  • What should I bring with me? Are there lavatory rolls, soap, shampoo, milk, teabags, coffee, hairdryer?

    A welcome tray with tea and sugar awaits your arrival and you will find a pint of milk in the fridge. We also provide lavatory rolls and a bar of soap, per basin but no other toiletries. We do not provide hairdryers.

Built for a proserous Gainsborough lawyer

The Château was built in 1747–8 for a prosperous lawyer from Gainsborough  named Thomas Hutton. Mr Hutton and his father before him had looked after the local business affairs of the Earl of Abingdon who owned two small estates nearby (Gate Burton and Knaith) which had come into his family through an earlier marriage and were some distance from the rest of his very large property.

In 1744 the Earl was advised to sell the two estates and Hutton, seeing the chance of a bargain, purchased that of Gate Burton. (The neighbouring Knaith estate was sold to a Mr Dalton, and in the early 19th century Hutton’s grandson bought it and brought it back to the Hutton family.) Gate Burton at that time had no hall or manor house and rather than go to the expense of providing one Mr Hutton built the little Château on its wooded knoll above the river, with its garden and plantations around it, as a weekend cottage. There, according to his son, “he could retire from the Business of his office at Gainsborough, from a Saturday evening until the Monday Morning”. He would have had his rooms on the first floor, with a kitchen and servant’s room below.

The architect of the Château was John Platt, and it must have been almost his first work, designed when he was only 19. Platt came from a family of mason architects and for 50 years and more he practised as a builder and statuary mason as well as an architect, all with equal success. He worked almost exclusively in Yorkshire; the Château is almost his only building outside the county. His many works include Mount Pleasant, near Sheffield; Thundercliffe Grange, Ecclefield and Page Hall, Eccleshall. He added a wing to Tong Hall, designed a fireplace for Renishaw and staircases made of marble from his own quarries for Aston Hall and Clifton Hall.

Thomas Hutton finally began to build Gate Burton Hall in about 1765, and it was mostly complete by 1768. The Château came to be used simply as a summer house, an agreeable destination for picnics or the odd night “in rural seclusion”. Towards the end of the century, however, alterations were carried out, including the addition of balconies at either end of the building. In the 19th century new windows were inserted, but they were on the wrong scale being two panes wide instead of three; the exterior above the rustication was rendered and the roof was renewed.

In 1907 the Hutton family sold both Gate Burton and Knaith to the Sandars family, wealthy maltsters from Gainsborough. In the sale particulars the Château is described as a shooting box, so the upper floor had probably been kept for the use of the family for shooting lunches and other such entertainments. After the War it was not lived in again and was left stranded without natural users. Gate Burton Hall, with its park, was sold again in 1974, but the strip of land along the river where the Château stands was retained and became part of the Knaith Hall estate, which had been inherited by a connection of the Sandars family.

The work of neglect and natural decay inevitably continued, accelerated as so often by the activities of vandals, until the building was approaching the point of collapse. In 1982 the owner, concerned for its survival but unable to afford the cost of repair himself therefore offered it to the Landmark Trust.

In an extremely poor state of repair

When the Landmark Trust took on the Château in 1982, there was little of the building that did not need extensive repair. Under architect Philip Jebb the builders Simons of Lincoln began work by dismantling anything that was unsafe or past repair, and securing what remained.

The small balconies at either end and the steps leading up to that on the west were taken down. The urns on the parapet, together with some fragments found lying around the building, were sent away for restoration. The parapet itself had also to be taken down since the brickwork was unsafe. Beneath this, the entablature was also fairly insecure above the openings between the main block and the side wings and had to be propped up from inside the building. The slates were taken off the roof so that the condition of the timbers could be judged, and the decayed render hacked off the walls. Inside, what little remained was very rotten; after recording the mouldings, this too was hacked out.

At this point reconstruction could begin. Under the render fair face pointing was found to the brickwork, indicating that the building had originally been plain brick above the rustication. So after the repair of structural weaknesses (in the niches on the end walls, for example), the brickwork was simply washed and repointed using lime putty. The stone rustication was treated similarly. Elsewhere, stone was renewed only where it was badly weathered or where a section was missing, as in the balustrade of the central window. All the new work was carried out in Ancaster stone, which matched the original.

The roof timbers were nearly all unsound, so that a new roof structure was necessary. Enough of the original slates survived intact to cover the back and inner slopes of the side wings; elsewhere a new slate called Corunna Grey was used. The parapets were rebuilt, incorporating lead water chutes, with new coping stones where necessary. The chimney was also rebuilt as closely as possible to the original in John Platt’s drawing, which is in the Sheffield City Library. The balconies were not replaced, however. They were almost certainly later additions, and since an internal staircase would have to be built anyway they were not needed for access. The two doorways leading to them have therefore become windows.

All the windows needed replacing, which gave the opportunity to return to the original proportions of three panes which suits the scale of the building much better. The work to the exterior was completed by the return of the urns to the corners of the parapets. Only two had proved to be beyond repair and to replace these matching new urns were carved.

Inside the building, just about everything is new work. Only the first-floor fireplace and some paving stones on the ground are from the building as it was. Since the plasterwork had seemed to be later than 1747, however, it was not replaced with an exact copy but with mouldings more typical of the mid-18th century. A staircase was fitted into one wing, bedrooms into the other, and the kitchen and bathroom on the ground floor. The Château was ready once more for its original purpose as a place of retirement from business, for a weekend or longer.

Select a changeover day to start your booking...

QuestionWhat's a changeover day? and Why can't I select other dates?

A changeover day is a particular day of the week when holidays start and end at our properties. These tend to be on a Friday or a Monday but can sometimes vary. All stays run from one changeover day until another changeover day.