Festivities at Clumber

Henry Pelham Archibald Douglas Pelham-Clinton (1864-1928) was the 7th Duke of Newcastle. Known as Lord Lincoln until he inherited the dukedom from his father in 1879, when aged only 15, Henry was educated at Eton and then Magdalen College, Oxford, where he matriculated in 1884. He held a number of local offices appropriate with his rank and station, such as Lord High Steward of Retford, Master Forrester of Dartmoor and Keeper of St Briavel's Castle. A damaging fall in childhood meant he had delicate health and so only played a small part in public life. As a staunch Anglo-Catholic, however, he did speak on ecclesiastical issues in the House of Lords. One of the 7th Duke's most significant achievements was the restoration of the fortunes of his family estate, by means of both consolidation and disposal - the latter evidenced by activity such as the sale of the Worksop Manor Estate. When, in 1879 a serious fire destroyed much of Clumber House, he had it magnificently rebuilt to designs by the younger Charles Barry. The duke was actively involved in the rebuilding process, and in particular in the design and building of the magnificent St Mary the Virgin Chapel in the grounds. He was also responsible for the establishment of the Clumber Choir School.

Another fire, in 1912, caused less damage, but the effects of the First World War and the Great Depression forced the abandonment of the mansion, which, like many other houses during this period, was demolished in 1938.[2] Charles Boot of Henry Boot Construction, was contracted to demolish the house and he removed a vast array of statues, facades and fountains to his Derbyshire home, Thornbridge Hall, although most were lost to private buyers at auction. The Church of St Mary, a Grade I listed Gothic Revival chapel built by the 7th Duke of Newcastle and a four-acre walled kitchen garden with a glass house measuring some 450 feet in length survive. Clumber Park was purchased by the National Trust in 1946.

The Duke's study, designed by Barry, is all that survives of the main house, it is presently home to the Clumber Café. It is listed Grade II on the National Heritage List for England.

Newspapers were full of details about the coming-of-age celebration for the Duke of Newcastle.