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Public Statues and Sculpture Association

Thomas Machell (1647–1698)

Anglican priest, amateur architect and antiquary. The son of Lancelot Machell of Crackenthorpe Hall near Penrith, he was educated at Queen’s College, Oxford, becoming the rector of Kirkby Thore near Appleby and later a chaplain to Charles II. In 1692 he travelled on horseback all over Westmorland and Cumberland drawing and making notes on places of interest. In Cumbria, he was involved in the restoration of the bishop’s residence at Rose Castle, he redesigned his own ancestral home Crackenthorpe Hall, and carried out work at Appleby Castle and Howgill Castle, sometimes in association with the mason Edward (or Thomas) Addison. He was probably the architect of the Market Cross (1682) at Carlisle.

Bibliography: D.A. Cross, Public Sculpture of Lancashire and Cumbria, Liverpool, 2017, p. 152; J.M. Ewbank, Antiquary on Horseback, Kendal, 1963, pp. xi–xvi; M. Hyde and N. Pevsner, Cumbria: Cumberland, Westmorland and Furness (The Buildings of England), New Haven and London, 2010; J. Rogan and E. Birley, ‘Thomas Machell the Antiquary’, Transactions of the Cumberland and Westmorland Antiquarian and Archaeological Society, NS 58 (1956), pp. 132–53; A.J.L. Winchester, ‘Machell, Thomas’, ODNB, 2004; M. Winstanley (ed.), Revealing Cumbria’s Past: 150 Years of the Cumberland and Westmorland Antiquarian and Archaeological Society, Kendal, 2016, p. 4.

David A. Cross, 2017