Hutton Hall

When the Hutton Hall estate — the home Sir Joseph Whitwell Pease — was put on the market in 1903, it was described as ”a singularly beautiful and truly valuable property, situated in a rich and fertile valley …. comprising about 1,629 acres, mostly and comprising a distinguished family mansion in the domestic Gothic style, seated in a well-wooded park of 230 acres (lake and boat-house), having beautiful natural surroundings, with wooded slopes extending up to the noble range of the Cleveland Hills1‘Sir Joseph Pease and His Estates’ (1903) Shields Daily Gazette, 05 Jan, 4, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/JL3244377336/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=eea7de69 [accessed 13 Feb 2022]..

It was offered, along with his other estates of Pinchinthorpe House, Nunthorpe Hall, and Morton, and farms at Galley Hill, and Ayton Bank, as a result of the collapse of his banking firm of J. and J. W. Pease.

A far cry from 18 years earlier when Pease had given away his niece and ward, Beatrice Pease on her marriage to Viscount Lymington, eldest son of the Earl and Countess of Portsmouth in the company of many of the high echelons of Victorian society. The reception was held in Pease’s “town residence in Kensington Palace-gardens2‘FASHIONABLE MARRIAGES’ (1885) Leeds Mercury, 18 Feb, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/BC3201799389/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=9cd2a449 [accessed 05 Feb 2022]..

Probably not related to the ultimate demise of his bank, although the damage to his reputation would not have helped, was Pease’s embroilment with his niece in what was to become known as the Portsmouth Affair.

Pease and several other family members were trustees of the marriage settlement of Beatrice and of the property bequeathed to her in the will of her father, the late Edward Pease, Sir Joseph’s brother.

On her marriage, Beatrice and her husband had agreed to a highly complicated financial arrangement involving the formation of new companies and transfer of shares in which Pease and the other trustees purchased her interests.

But the expected return had not materialised and Beatrice, by now the Countess of Portsmouth, successfully took the trustees to court to set aside the arrangement.

The Court found that a full and fair disclosure had not been made, doubted the assertion that commercial and industrial depression as one of the reasons why it had been impossible to realise the estate, and disbelieved the statement that it was a fair and reasonable price.

Sir Joseph was amongst those giving evidence in the hearing but contradictions with correspondence and other trustees, only made matters worse. His reputation was in tatters3‘THE ESTATE OF THE LATE MR. E. PEASE’ (1900) Leeds Mercury, 12 Dec, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/BC3201953471/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=474e231d [accessed 05 Feb 2022]..

Sir Joseph Whitwell Pease died later in the year of the sale of Hutton Hall, 1903, aged 75.

  • 1
    ‘Sir Joseph Pease and His Estates’ (1903) Shields Daily Gazette, 05 Jan, 4, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/JL3244377336/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=eea7de69 [accessed 13 Feb 2022].
  • 2
    ‘FASHIONABLE MARRIAGES’ (1885) Leeds Mercury, 18 Feb, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/BC3201799389/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=9cd2a449 [accessed 05 Feb 2022].
  • 3
    ‘THE ESTATE OF THE LATE MR. E. PEASE’ (1900) Leeds Mercury, 12 Dec, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/BC3201953471/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=474e231d [accessed 05 Feb 2022].

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