keeton hall 1730

Keton Hall as engraved around 1730, one time home of the 2nd Duke of Leeds (Leeds in Kent not Leeds in Yorks). It used to exist on the road between Kiveton and Todwick and the contract to build it was given in 1698 at the pay of the 1st Duke of Leeds to replace the inadequately grand Elizabethan Thorpe Hall (on the Thorpe Salvin pages) which fell thereafter into ruin and was eventually dismantled.
Keeton Hall itself was demolished by the 6th Duke in 1811, whom the locals can thank for the loss of two of the best houses in the area as he relocated himself to Hornby Castle, Bedale, 65 miles north in North Yorks. He rented out the parkland for farming, and later for coal mining although he never let his Harthill estate suffer the ravages of coal mining. The great estates of this area tended to break up and be sold in the 1930s. Behind Keeton Hall was the Dukes hunting estate and park, which is why Kiveton is now called Kiveton Park. This hall used to contain paintings by artists like:

Van Dyke

Today such a collection would surely be worth in excess of £100 million.

In 1806 the Kiveton estate was visited by the then Prince of Wales and legend has it that the Duke destroyed Keeton Hall as a bet with the Prince (it's just a legend though).

The gravestone of one of the Duke's park keepers, one Richard Ashby (d1778), can be seen on the Harthill Church pages. There are lots of pubs in the area called the Leeds Arms because of succesive Dukes of Leeds. The first Duke who built the place was a knight (Sir Thomas) from 1647-1673, and then Earl of Danby 1674-1694, and finally a Duke from 1694 until his death in 1712. He was a very big political player e.g. treasurer of England 1673, and plotter against James II and for William of Orange 1688. The full list of titles held by Thomas Osbourne are: Thomas Osbourne, 1st Duke of Leeds, Marquess of Carmarthen, Earl of Danby, Viscount Latimer of Danby, Viscount Osbourne of Dunblane, Baron Osbourne of Kiveton, Sir Thomas Osbourne. Quite a collection of titles and gongs.

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