Oliver Duckett Folly
Folly Richmond North Yorkshire

Oliver Duckett Folly

Folly In Richmond, North Yorkshire

Magnificent folly on the outskirts of Richmond, built around 1760.

The Oliver Duckett monument near Richmond really is a magnificent sight - it definitely captures your attention when you see it from the road. It has a circular tower, with faux gunloops and was allegedly built with repurposed stones from Richmond Castle. I can't find any concrete facts about this, but the monument itself is generally a bit of an enigma. Local stories suggest it may have been a lookout point for Oliver Cromwell's forces or a refuge for the legendary Robin Hood. However, historians place its construction at around 1760, as part of the landscaping efforts undertaken by the owners of Aske Hall.

'Duckett' may refer to its cruciform base, resembling a type of dovetail joint used in carpentry. However, the 'Oliver' part remains a mystery. Some propose it was the name of the last watchman stationed there, while others suggest a connection to the Robinson family, who owned the estate during its construction in the 18th century. I think we will never know! 'Olliver' is a popular road name in this area, however, so it may be that this was simply the name of the area in the 18th century.

Although, there are plenty of theories on what the monument was, The Duckett may of course be exactly what the word 'folly' suggests. A striking looking building with no real purpose, other than to show off the wealth of the person who made it. It's believed to have been created by John Carr, the architect who also worked on Aske Hall from 1763.

The wider Aske Hall estate where the Oliver Duckett stands, also has a huge gothic folly, woodland walks and parks attributed to Capability Brown. There is also a lake with a roman style temple and the Oliver Duckett sits just beyond the park boundary. Aske Hall is a grade I listed building and is only open to the public during Heritage Open Days in September - one to look out for later in the year!

Definitely worth a look if you're in the Richmond area, as it's only a 5 minute drive away from the town centre, where there is plenty to see there too. There are some paths around The Duckett so you can have a wander round and see the folly in all of it's glory, and admire the views of the surrounding countryside.

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How To Find Oliver Duckett Folly

Where Is Oliver Duckett Folly?

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54.414308, -1.718727

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Where To Park For Oliver Duckett Folly?

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54.411425, 54.411425

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There is no dedicated parking for the folly. We parked on some streets nearby.

Contributed by Sandra Clemens

I love the great outdoors and have been a National Trust & English Heritage member for years. I also love going off the beaten track and finding places like Sharp's Folly or Rothley Castle which are hidden gems in Northumberland. My favourite recent hike was climbing Red Screes in the Lake District on a whim, not fully grasping how high 776m was. It was still an achievement to conquer a Wainwright walk and I hope to do more one day.

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Sandra Clemens

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Oliver Duckett Folly was listed in Folly // North Yorkshire // Richmond