Riseholme Campus Character Area is located north of Lincoln to the east of the A15 and northwest of the A46, both busy routes into the city of Lincoln. The area occupies gently undulating land either side of the shallow valley of a small watercourse, the Nettleham Beck, a tributary of the Barlings Eau and the River Witham.
The centre of the Character Area is occupied by Riseholme Campus, which has at its core the 18th century Riseholme Hall and associated estate buildings, around which a number of educational buildings have been constructed during the 20th century. The campus is served by a network of narrow lanes which lead from main roads to the west (A15) and east (A46). Most roads throughout the area are generally straight in form, although are more sinuous around the buildings of the campus.
Architectural styles of buildings within the campus vary from the Italianate Riseholme Hall of early 18th century origin, to the plainer college buildings of the 1960s to present as well as a post-modern Rural Science Block. The scale of buildings within the campus tends to be large and they occupy poorly defined plots of land which together form the campus. The buildings are detached individual commissions built on the immediate grounds north and east of the hall.
Figure 3 – Riseholme Hall, north façade
A number of other buildings exist which relate to the Riseholme Hall estate and include a church, a former rectory, lodges and cottages. Stone buildings are more likely to be associated with the modelling of the estate for the Bishops of Lincoln, though there is an increased use of brick for buildings later in the 19th century.
Riseholme Hall and a separate stable block are both of 18th century date. The hall was extensively refurbished in 1840 and its present form is seven bays wide by two storeys high stone building with a projecting range to the east and classical porticos to the south and north. There is a low solid-to-void ratio with large vertical wooden sash windows to the front, rear and west side. The hall has a number of decorative features, including engaged Doric columns to the porticos and there are rusticated quoins and a balustraded parapet.
To the east of the hall, the 18th century stable block, was also remodelled in an Italianate style during the 1840s. It has a central range of five bays width and two-storeys high with central square clock tower. There are flanking ranges of single storey height which along with a stone wall define a courtyard. The roofs have deep eaves with slate tiles.
Figure 4 – The Stable Block
Immediately east of the stable block is the 1850 church. Built of stone in a Victorian curvilinear Decorated style, it occupies the centre of a rectangular graveyard. The church is built on an artificial rectangular mound and the graveyard is surrounded by a stone wall.
Figure 5 – St Mary’s Church
To the south of the church lies the brick walled garden of the hall with a stone built garden house at the western end. The style of the house is broadly similar to the stable block with slate roofs and deep eaves. The walled garden has been incorporated into a range of educational workshops.
The Old Rectory on Riseholme Lane is a large two-storey by 6 bay wide house dating to 1856, shortly after the construction of the church and also designed by Teulon. The building occupies a large plot and lies at an angle to Riseholme Lane. It is constructed of beige stock brick with stone lintels and Gothic motifs in red brick. The roof is half-hipped and punctuated by a number of large chimneys.
Figure 6 – The Neo-Gothic Old Rectory
The Kennels, lying in the southeast part of the Character Area, is a purpose built building comprising brick built kennels with pens, a barn and two adjoining cottages.
The earliest 20th century additions to the campus consist of a halls of residence (Wordsworth Hall), to the north of Riseholme Hall, dating to 1961. The residence is a three-storey neo-Georgian building with slate hipped roofs and projecting bay windows and porch to the ground floor. The lower floor is built of stone with the upper storeys of light brown and red brick. There are bay windows at ground floor level with steel framed casement windows to the upper storeys creating a moderately high solid-to-void ratio. The roof is hipped and of slate. Decoration consists of stone detailing, such as the carved heads of a rams and a bull above the porch.
To the west of Wordsworth Hall is an octagonal lecture theatre (1968-70) with large vertical windows set between projecting buttresses. To the east lies Tennyson Hall, constructed in the 1970s in dark brown brick with windows set in vertical recessed panels and a circular stair tower at its southern end. Other 1970s buildings include the library and the Lindsey Centre.
Further east are two modern L-shaped accommodation blocks of identical form. These are two-storey buildings of beige brick with hipped slate roofs and a medium solid-to-void ratio. There are decorative string courses in contrasting coloured brick and blind dormers.
Lawress Hall is a large building occupying the west part of the campus, although is not part of the University of Lincoln, being the Inland Revenue Training Centre. It is a steel framed 4-storey high building clad in beige brick with large vertical windows, some of which extend to three-storeys in height. Despite its height, the squat nature of the building gives a horizontal emphasis to the structure. Roofs occur at two levels (i.e. between the 3rd and 4th floor and the top) which are hipped. Decoration includes the use of brick pilasters and artificial stone string courses and detailing.
Figure 7 – Lawress Hall has decoration typical of the more recent buildings in the Character Area
The most recent addition to the campus is the Rural Science Centre, a post-modern building of concrete and timber cladding. Large windows are located to the front of this property, otherwise it has a high solid-to-void ratio. There are further buildings to the east of this which are functional in nature and appearance (e.g. stables, barns and kennels).
Figure 8 – The post-modern Rural Science Centre
There are a number of residential properties located along the south side of Riseholme Lane which form a fringe to the estate in the southwest of the area. A number of Post-War [1945-1966 AD] build units are visible, particularly at the west end of the lane, but have been interspersed with new infill buildings. Many of the buildings face the campus and it is probable they once formed part of the estate associated with the hall. Two of the buildings (i.e. Nos. 2 and 5 Riseholme Lane) were former lodges to the estate although they are not similar in style to other estate buildings.
The scale of properties is similar. Houses are detached or semi-detached and mainly 2 storeys high and between 2 and 5 bays in width. Properties are rectangular in plan with shallow projections to the front or side. The long axis of the houses is aligned parallel to the road. Properties face the road and are built to the centre front of medium to large rectangular plots.
Buildings have a high solid-to-void ratio with small windows overlooking the road. Public/private boundaries are high and are generally hedged or fenced, creating a sense of privacy along roads. Projections include porches, garages and gabled bays either at the centre of a pair of semi-detached properties or to one side of detached bungalows.
Buildings are built of load bearing brick in dark red or beige colour. Roofs are constructed from pantiles or modern concrete tiles. Ridgelines are parallel to the road and roofs can be pitched, hipped or half hipped and usually have a chimney. Buildings are generally plain in appearance.
Figure 9 – Typical detached house along Riseholme Lane
Most of the Character Area comprises open fields or woodland pertaining to the former parkland of the Riseholme estate which is still very evident throughout the Character Area. Fields are generally pasture of managed grassland and have been adapted from the former parkland to cater for horse eventing (e.g. the former North Park), golf course management or use by livestock (e.g. South Park). Field boundaries are often hedged but are sometimes divided into smaller plots using fencing of various materials. Many of the hedges contain mature deciduous trees planted at regular intervals along their lengths.
Areas of woodland are located north of Riseholme Hall. North Wood (or Riseholme Hall Wood) is semi-natural woodland with a range of tree species including oak and sycamore and is also a Site of Nature Conservation Importance. There is woodland to the east of the hall which was originally designed to frame a vista looking to the northeast. Other wooded areas are managed plantations that are cropped on a regular cycle and as a result contain fewer species of trees, of which oak predominates. Occasional smaller coverts exist which probably originated as screening (e.g. tree lines along Riseholme Lane).
Managed lawns around the campus buildings, particularly Riseholme Hall, are occasionally planted with a variety of mature and semi-mature trees. Some date to when the grounds formed part of the parkland of the hall and these are interspersed with new avenues along footways and roads. Oak is present along with yew and birch.
Roadways through the Character Area are made of tarmac and apart from Riseholme Lane serve the campus buildings. Footways are restricted to the areas between campus buildings and are of tarmac, red brick pavers and granite setts. There are also dedicated footpaths and bridleways to the north of the campus buildings.