The Mausolea & Monuments Trust

Davison Mausoleum

A stone building, largely submerged in the ground, with pedimented gables and a low pitched roof. There are steps leading down to an iron door at one end, an inscription on the pediment at the other, and s-curved iron stanchions supporting the walls to either side.

Architect

Not known

Listing

Grade II (England and Wales)

Year Built

1867

History

Alexander Davison (1750-1828) was a close friend and confidant of Admiral Lord Nelson and spent more than £2,000 of his own money on medals for every Royal Navy officer and rating who took part in Nelson's victory at the Battle of the Nile in 1798. He bought Swarland Park in 1795, and later laid out the grounds with trees massed to show the formation of the fleet at the Battle of the Nile. In 1806 he built an obelisk there in memory of Nelson and, at the very end of his life, is likely to have been responsible for the erection of the Lanton Obelisk commemorating his brother, John Davison of Lanton. The mausoleum at Kirknewton, however, was probably the work of his son, Sir William Davison (1788 – 1873) who inherited both Swarland and Lanton. A plaque in the church states that both he and his wife, Lady Rosalie (1790 – 1867), daughter of Ludwig Detleff, Baron of Lutzow, are buried in the “vault in the churchyard”. The inscription on the building itself merely says “Davison of Swarland and Lanton”. This seems more likely to refer to Sir William than his father, and Lady Rosalie’s death in 1867 provides a possible date for the construction of the mausoleum.

Condition

Good, though there is some moss on the roof (2004).

Sources

BoE: Northumberland (1992), Swarland, 581 and Lanton, 373.

PDF

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Location

Churchyard of St Gregory,
Kirknewton,
Northumberland.

NE71 6XF

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