A neo-classical mausoleum, possibly attributed as the work of the architect William Robinson (1720-1775), built on a square ground plan having domed roof. Brick walls, laid in English bond, having base plinth, corner pilasters and crowning timber cornice (painted). Square-headed ‘Gibbsian’ doorway to north wall having a rusticated stone surround. Semi-circular ventilation ope over doorway with corresponding ope to the south. Blind round-headed window to east elevation having an oval funerary monument to Samuel Heathcote. Shallow dome rising from the four corners, weathered in lead.
Interior consists of a broad passage with 35 loculi on each side. A total of 38 loculi are occupied, each of which carry inscriptions. Rendered and limewashed internal walls.
Some have attributed the design of the Heathcote mausoleum as the work of William Robinson (1720-1775) citing this to be a development of the 1757 Simeon mausoleum in the grounds of Aston Hall, Staffordshire, and the neighbouring Jervis mausoleum of c.1757 in the churchyard at Stone, Staffordshire, both of which were designed by Robinson.
possibly attributed to William Robinson
Grade II (England and Wales)
Sir Thomas Heathcote, 2nd Bt of Hursley (1721-1787), whose family had made their money from trade during the late 17th century, built the mausoleum in the churchyard at Hursley because he considered the family vault under the church no longer adequate.
In 1771, when the mausoleum was complete, the coffins of earlier members of the family were moved there from the existing family vault. Thirty eight members of the family now occupy loculi to either side of the mausoleum. Each coffin has been placed into the loculi so that the foot end is aligned to the east. Hence those on the left (east) side were placed in feet first, and those on the right (west) side were placed head first. A memorial to the Rev Thomas Heathcote (d.1811) and his wife Letitia (d.1802) is located to the centre of the floor.
However, not every member of the family wanted to be buried there; an oval tablet set within a blind window to the external east elevation commemorates Samuel Heathcote (d.1797), the brother of Sir Thomas, who left specific instructions that he be buried, double depth, in the churchyard as he felt it would be “more snug laying than to be pushed into one of those pigeon holes of that horrid place”.
Further deposits of members of the Heathcote family within the mausoleum took place in 1901, 1908, 1916 and 1925.
The MMT took the building into guardianship in 1997.
The thirty-eight deposits in the mausoleum are as follows (those in italics having been moved from the vault beneath Hursley church to the mausoleum in 1771):
Left (East) side
Jenetta Heathcote daughter of the 1st Baronet 1737 – 1809
Helena Mary Heathcote 3rd daughter of the 5th Baronet 1853-1925
Rev’d Samuel Heathcote 3rd son of the 3rd Baronet 1773-1846
Sir Thomas Freeman Heathcote 4th Baronet 1769-1825
Gilbert Heathcote 4th son of the 1st Baronet 1732-1800
Katherine Heathcote (nee Pickering) first wife of the Rev’d Samuel Heathcote 1781-1815
Dame Elizabeth Freeman Heathcote wife of the 4th Baronet 1778 – 1808
George Heathcote 3rd son of the 2nd Baronet 1749-1789
Selina Frances Heathcote 2nd daughter of the 5th Baronet 1842-1916
Thomas Heathcote eldest son of the Rev’d Samuel Heathcote 1806-1808
Henry Heathcote 6th son of the 2nd Baronet 1766-1767
Revd Evelyn Dawsonne Heathcote 5th son of the 5th Baronet 1844-1908
Dame Selina Heathcote (nee Shirley) 2nd wife of the 5th Baronet 1814-1901
Katherine Heathcote 2nd daughter of Rev’d Samuel Heathcote 1805-1826
Frances Sarah Heathcote eldest daughter of the 3rd Baronet 1770-1781
Dame Anne Heathcote (nee Tollett) wife of the 2nd Baronet 1734-1799
Sir William Heathcote 5th Baronet 1801-1881
Rev’d William Heathcote 2nd son of the 3rd Baronet 1772-1802
Dame Frances Heathcote (nee Thorpe) wife of the 3rd Baronet 1742-1816
Sir Thomas Heathcote 2nd Baronet 1722 - 1787
Alathea Bigg Wither sister-in-law of the Rev’dWilliam Heathcote 1777 – 1847
Hon. Caroline Frances Heathcote (nee Perceval) 1st wife of the 5th Baronet 1798 - 1835
Elizabeth (nee Wither) widow of Rev’d William Heathcote mother of 5th Baronet 1775 - 1855
Sir William Heathcote 3rd Baronet 1746-1819
Dame Elizabeth Heathcote (nee Hinton) 1st wife of the 2nd Baronet 1726-1749
Right (West side)
Ann Lovell granddaughter of the 3rd Baronet 1800-1871
Harriet Lovell granddaughter of the 3rd Baronet 1799-1820
George Heathcote 5th son of the 1st Baronet 1735-1735 and Rt Hon Lady Elizabeth Heathcote (nee Parker) wife of the 1st Baronet 1700-1746
Harriet Hersent Lovell 2nd daughter of the 3rd Baronet 1775-1850
Sir William Heathcote 1st Baronet 1692-1751
Langford Lovell son in law of the 3rd Baronet 1775 - 1852
Rev’d William Heathcote 2nd son of the 1st Baronet 1723-1748
William Dawsonne uncle of the 1st Baronet 1660-1727
Anne Sophia 2nd daughter of the 2nd Baronet 1757-1821
Vice-Admiral F W Drake husband of Elizabeth 1724-1787
Sophia de Salis daughter of Vice-Admiral Drake 1771-1803
Elizabeth Drake 2nd daughter of 1st Baronet 1730-1797
Samuel Pineau tutor of the 1st Baronet d. 1744
In 2005 to 2006 the Mausolea and Monuments Trust carried out conservation works to the external envelop (grant assisted by Hampshire County Council and Winchester City Council). No works were carried out to the interior of the structure.
BoE: Hants, 1967, 298;
Church handbook, 1993, 298;
Pamphlet entailed ‘Heathcote Mausoleum Hampshire’ by Dr Julian Litten.
If you're visiting this mausoleum and would like to take this information with you, why not download and print the PDF using the link below:
Churchyard of All Saints,
2003 MMT News March
the Heathcote mausoleum; a funny thing happened on the way to the cemetery; Raikes mausoleum, E Riding of Yorkshire ... more
2006 MMT News Winter
Heathcote Mausoleum ... more
Evicted from Eternity
Country Life article by Michael Hall ... more
Roger Bowdler's article for Churchscape
A paper discussing the significance of mausolea, introducing the work of the MMT ... more
Rural Charity of the Year
Country Life award to the MMT ... more
The Decay of Dyinjg
An article by Christopher Woodward for the Society of Architectural Historians of Great Britain Newsletter No. 61 Summer 1997 ... more